Shares of Asian energy companies increased on Thursday because oil prices reached $50 a barrel level. However, worries about a possible increase of rates in the U.S. kept stocks from growing even higher.
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Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average index gained 0.3%, and S&P/ASX 200 in Australia slightly declined by 0.2%, while Kospi index in Korea lost 0.1%. China’s the Shanghai Composite Index decreased by 1%. Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong slipped 0.2%.
At the beginning of the trading session in Asia, Brent oil futures which are the global oil standard grew to more than $50 per barrel, a psychological level for traders. In 2015, Goldman Sachs forecasted that oil prices could fall even to $20 per barrel, and the price drop was the primary concern for stock investors worldwide.
Decreasing oil prices negatively affect incomes of energy corporations and the financial organizations that give loans to them. Also, the price drop didn’t bring significant growth in the U.S. consumer spending, adding more uncertainty to the performance of the U.S. economy, experts suggest.
According to Alex Wijaya, a senior sales trader at CMC Markets, oil prices increase will be positive for the equities market. Oil Search stocks gained 0.8%, and Australia’s Woodside Petroleum climbed 1.5%.
However, these positive trends weren’t enough for shares to grow in China and Hong Kong. In Hong Kong, energy companies stocks were only that grew. In China, oil company PetroChina gained 0.8%.
Mr. Wijaya added that traders are still mostly concerned about China’s slowing economy, and there are doubts on how much these stocks can grow more.
Shares in China also continued the retreat, making it the third day in a row of the Shanghai Composite Index decreasing. In contrary, energy stocks were increasing despite the trend. For example, China’s CSI 300 gained 0.3%.
Worries about the U.S. economy reappeared due to lower Markit Economics’ services purchasing managers index than was projected overnight.
As a consequence, the price of gold which is known as a safe asset stepped back to $1,232.30 for a troy ounce on Thursday morning.
Analysts at Citigroup have issued a note suggesting that they don’t expect investors to increase the risk to their portfolios before the publication of the U.S. economic figures on Thursday and the speech of Fed’s Chairwoman Janet Yellen on Friday.
Recently Brent crude oil was sold for $50.02 per barrel.
Analytical review at Alpari