Global stock markets continue rising. In Toyko shares of Toshiba jumped more than twenty percent on optimism about the sale of its chip business. Chinese stock markets rose after upbeat comments from Credit Suisse. The Dow continued its record run, supported by Wal-Mart and Home Depot. European markets follow Wall Street Higher as DAX briefly rose to 12,000 points. Commodities show a mixed performance today, the higher dollar limits upside.

Japanese Stocks Little Moved, Hang Seng Rises

- Japanese Nikkei 225 closed virtually unchanged today at 19,379 points, broader TOPIX Index up 0.1 percent at 1,557 points; investors were reluctant today, awaiting clues for course of monetary policies in the U.S. from today’s release of minutes from last meeting; shares of Toshiba Corp jumped 22 percent on optimism the company will be able to sell its chip business and survive latest crisis caused by massive writedowns in its nuclear business, reports suggest a buyer for chip biz could be chosen in May, Toshiba aims to raise 1 trillion yen with the sale; shares of Rakuten rose 9.4 percent after saying a share buyback is planned for 100 billion yen; Mitsubishi Motors up 3.6 percent and JFE Holdings up 3.0 percent; Ajinomoto down 2.7 percent, Asahi Group down 2.2 percent and Sumco Corp lost 1.9 percent

- Chinese stocks rose, Shanghai Shenzhen Composite up 0.2 percent to 3,261 points, CSI 300 Index up 0.2 percent to 3,489 points; Chinese home prices index rose 12.2 percent in January, showing continued strong performance in the countries housing market; Chinese cement, as well as iron and steel stocks were higher today after Credit Suisse released upbeat remarks on the market

- strong performance of housing market and Credit Suisse’s view on certain stocks lifted Hang Seng Index which rose 0.9 percent to 24,178 points today, Hang Seng China Enterprises Index was up 1.2 percent to 10,531 points today; property stocks led gains with China Resources Land climbing 5.0 percent, Wharf Holdings up 4.0 percent, China Overseas Land up 3.6 percent and New World Development up 3.5 percent; only few stocks were down, Belle International lost 0.9 percent, Cathay Pacific down 0.2 percent, HSBC Holdings down 0.2 percent; Anhui Conch Cement rose 3.0 percent, Maanshan Iron up 4.1 percent

- Australian stocks rose today, S&P/ASX 200 up 0.2 percent at 5,805 points, supported by shares of Woolworth which reported a net profit of $725.3 million in first half after a loss a year earlier, revenue rose 1.1. percent to $32.4 billion, but dividend down 10 cents to 34 cents; miners were mixed with BHP Billiton down 0.7 percent, Rio Tinto up 0.6 percent, Fortescue Metals lost 2.7 percent and Newcrest Mining up 0.9 percent

- Korean stocks closed higher on foreign investors stepping in, KOSPI was up 0.2 percent to 2,106 points; traders awaiting tomorrows central bank interest rate decision; Samsung Electronics rose 0.9 percent, KEPCO up 0.5 percent, Hyundai Motor down 1.0 percent; chipmaker SK Hynix down 0.6 percent

Dow Continues Record Run For Eighth Day

- Dow rose 0.6 percent to 20,743 points yesterday, NASDAQ up 0.5 percent at 5,865 points, S&P 500 up 0.6 percent at 2,365 points

- yesterday’s rise marked the Dow’s eighth record close in a row, only few stocks declined, Caterpillar DuPont, IBM and Microsoft lost; shares of Wal-Mart, United Health, Boeing and Home Depot rose

- Wal-Mart reported sales of $129.75 billion in the quarter ending January 31st, up 0.8 percent YoY, profit was down to $3.76 billion or $1.22 a share, adjusted profit at $1.30; EPS in current quarter seen at $0.90 to $1.00 and $4.40 to $4.40 for the full year; the company said that online sales rose 29 percent in last quarter, increasing competition with Amazon.com, but overalls share of online revenue only three percent of global revenue

- Home Depot also reported result, coming in above expectations, share buyback of $15 billion planned

- shares of Apple were up 0.7 percent to $136.70 after analysts at Morgan Stanley raised price target to $154 on optimism over sales in China

- yesterday’s economic calendar was light, preliminary Markit manufacturing PMI was down 0.7 points to 54.3 points, services PMI down 1.7 to 53.9 points

European Stocks Higher As DAX Touches 12k

- German DAX up 0.2 percent at 11,993 points after briefly hitting 12,000 points; French CAC 40 up 0.4 percent at 4,908 points, London’s FTSE 100 Index up 0.3 percent at 7,295 points and Italy’s FTSE MIB down 0.4 percent at 18,960 points

- in Frankfurt shares of ThyssenKrupp rise 5.0 percent after the company said it would sell its Brazilian Plant for 1.5 billion euros; Fresenius Medical Care, Henkel, Heidelberg Cement and Merck also rise

- Bayer AG drop 2.4 percent as Q4 profit was down 26 percent to 453 million euros on sales of 11.82 billion euros, missing expectations

- in London Rolls-Royce keep climbing, up 5.9 percent, Capita up 5.4 percent, Llyoyds Bank up 3.6 percent; Mediclinic down another 7.6 percent, Anglo American down 4.0 percent, BHP Billion down 1.7 percent

- Airbus SE reported a net profit decline of 66 percent in full year 2016, net profit at 995 million euros, hit by a 1.2 billion euros charge related to its A400M military transporter; EBITDA down 3.6 percent at 3.96 billion euros, sales up 3 percent to 66.58 billion euros

- German Ifo business climate index up 1.2 points to 111 points, expectations index up 0.8 points to 104 points, above expectations

Commodities Mixed

- oil prices taking a breather today, Brent down 0.6 percent at $56.31/bbl; OPEC said it was optimistic on output cuts but is looking for extension of output deal beyond June 2017; Goldman Sachs see continued declined of global oil stocks this year, reiterating its view on oil prices

- profit taking in base metals, copper in London Metal Exchange trading down 0.5 percent at $6,019/metric ton; while supply outages lend support, higher dollar in anticipation of rate hike in the U.S. limits upside; Standard Chartered sees copper at an average of $5,900/metric ton

- firmer dollar also pressuring gold, investors wait for rate hike clues with release of minutes of latest Fed meeting, Goldman Sachs sees gold in three and six months at $1,200 and $1,250/oz in twelve months; spot gold up 0.1 percent at $1,237.08/oz

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