Market Buzz: Oil prices and US ‘fiscal cliff’ weigh down markets

Market Buzz: Oil prices and US ‘fiscal cliff’ weigh down markets
Russian stocks are likely to open lower Friday, reflecting uncertainty over US budget talks and falling oil prices.

­Russian equities traded mixed Thursday as declining oil prices overshadowed optimistic sentiment on global floors. The MICEX added 0.2% and the RTS shed 0.2%.

European markets closed higher on Thursday after the European Central Bank kept interest rates unchanged as expected, while strong factory-order data from Germany also contributed to growth. The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.7%. Germany’s DAX 30 rose 1.1% – its highest closing level since January 2008 – as data showed that factory orders jumped 3.9% in October. France’s CAC 40 rose 0.3% on gains in oilfield services firm Technip SA.

US stocks made modestly advances Thursday amid corporate gains in tech sector while investors closely watched the ‘fiscal cliff’ budget negotiations. The Dow Jones added 0.3%, the S&P 500 rose 0.3% and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.5%.

Asian stocks advanced on Friday, supported by commodities and banking gains. Japan’s Nikkei gained 0.8%, while South Korea's Kospi rose 0.3% and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 advanced 1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng climbed 0.2% and the Shanghai Composite jumped 1.2% on the successful IPO of the state-owned insurance giant People’s Insurance Company (Group) of China.