GLOBAL MARKETS-U.S. data lifts stocks, hopes of recovery

* U.S. jobless claims, trade data lift stocks, crude, euro

* Yen edges near 15-year high against dollar

* Safe-haven Treasuries fall after data
(Updates with European markets’ close)

By Manuela Badawy

NEW YORK, Sept 9 (BestGrowthStock) – Stronger-than-expected data on
the U.S. jobs market and international trade helped to lift
stocks and the euro on Thursday, bolstering optimism about an
economic recovery.

The yen approached a 15-year high against the dollar as
investors bet Japanese authorities were not ready to curb the
currency’s strength. Crude prices rose and bonds fell.

New claims for unemployment insurance fell more than
expected last week to their lowest level in two months and the
U.S. trade deficit narrowed more than forecast in July as
exports shot to their highest level since August 2008, painting
a rosier picture for growth. For details, see[ID:nN09174403].

Fears of a double-dip recession have kept investors at bay
in recent months. But with data in the past week topping
expectations, some have been caught off guard and brought back
into the market.

“The economic numbers in the last week or so have been able
to beat expectations, so that’s providing some confidence that
the third quarter will finish firm,” said Nick Kalivas, senior
equity index analyst at MF Global in Chicago.

The Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI: ) gained 49.12
points, or 0.47 percent, to 10,436.13. The Standard & Poor’s
500 Index (.SPX: ) gained 7.67 points, or 0.70 percent, to
1,106.54. The Nasdaq Composite Index (.IXIC: ) gained 15.52
points, or 0.70 percent, to 2,244.39.

Indexes were on track to rack up their sixth day of gains
in the past seven sessions in what was expected to be low
volume as the Jewish New Year was celebrated. The six lowest
volume days of the year have come in the last month.

The FTSEurofirst 300 (.FTEU3: ) index of top European shares
provisionally finished 0.9 percent higher at 1,081.20 points
after touching its highest since late April, boosted by the
U.S. economic data.

Capping gains in the Dow industrials, McDonald’s Corp
(MCD.N: ), the world’s largest hamburger chain, dropped 2.9
percent to $73.84 after reporting weaker-than-expected August
sales in Europe. [ID:nN09231135]

The dollar is down 9.9 percent against the Japanese
currency this year, which has been buoyant on global growth
concerns.

Japan’s Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda said the ministry
was conducting simulations on forex intervention, though the
Japanese currency hardly budged as the perception remains that
Tokyo is unlikely to intervene until the U.S. currency falls
near 80 yen.

Noda’s comments were also undermined as Bank of Japan
Governor Masaaki Shirakawa said he did not talk about
currencies and monetary policy at a government meeting.
[ID:nTKV006408]

“Comments from Japanese authorities indicated they are not
in a hurry to intervene, so new (dollar) lows should be
tested,” Roberto Mialich, currency strategist at UniCredit in
Milan, said.

The dollar was down 0.1 percent at 83.75 yen (JPY=: ), within
sight of the 15-year low of 83.34 yen hit on trading platform
EBS (JPY=EBS: ) on Wednesday. The low using Reuters data was
83.32 yen.

The euro is near a nine-year low against the yen hit in
late August. The low on Reuters data was 105.41 yen (EURJPY=: ).

The single currency was last little changed against the
dollar at $1.2722 (EUR=: ).

STOCKS HIGHER

World stocks measured by MSCI All-Country World Index
(.MIWD00000PUS: ) rose 0.6 percent. The index, which carried a
12-month forward price-to-earnings of 11.23 against a 10-year
average of 15.22, is down 2.8 percent this year.

“Equity markets are getting used to the reality that
economies are slowing quite significantly. The question is how
much growth is required now to support equity markets,” said
Bernard McAlinden, investment strategist at NCB Stockbrokers in
Dublin.

Illustrating the current dilemma, Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE: )
board member Juergen Fitschen said the risk of a credit crunch
in the real economy has not abated as demand for loans rises,
spurred by a rebound after the financial crisis.

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei average (.N225: ) rose 0.8 percent.

Oil (CLc1: ) rose above $75 a barrel, drawing strength from
the U.S. data and after a government oil inventory report
showed crude stocks fell last week.

U.S government bonds fell, with the benchmark 10-year note
(US10YT=RR: ), down 20/32 in price for a yield of 2.72 percent,
up from 2.65 percent late Wednesday.

The 30-year bond (US30YT=RR: ) was down 1-10/32 in price with
its yield at 3.80 percent, up from 3.74 percent late
Wednesday.

Gold (XAU=: ) was little changed within sight of its recent
all-time highs, recovering from an earlier drop after the
release of the U.S. data. Spot gold was bid at $1,254.40 an
ounce, less than 1 percent below June’s record high at
$1,264.90 an ounce. Earlier it fell to $1,250.30 an ounce.
(Additional reporting by Leah Schnurr in New York and Tamawa
Desai, Brian Gorman and Marie-Louise Gumuchian in London;
Editing by Kenneth Barry)

GLOBAL MARKETS-U.S. data lifts stocks, hopes of recovery