In Europe the FTSE surged 3%, whilst the CAC (+4%) and DAX (+3.5%) fared even better.
Stateside, the Dow added 126 points (1.1%), whilst the S&P (+0.5%) and Nasdaq (+0.6%) enjoyed more modest gains.
Upbeat retail sales provided the catalyst for Friday night’s gains in the US, overcoming a weak consumer confidence reading.
Friday night’s action capped off a wild week on the Street. For the first time in the index’s 115-year history it moved by 400 points or more on four separate occasions.
Oil continued its recent slide on Friday night, slipping 0.4% to settle at US$85.38 a barrel. Last week crude shed 1.7%, locking in a third straight weekly decline.
This morning the Australian and New Zealand dollars have gained ground against the yen after Japan’s finance minister warned he’s ready to intervene in the market to stem an advance in his’ nations’ currency.
In company news, UGL reported a 9.7% increase in annual profit to $158.5 million buoyed by strength in the resource sector and a steady stream of government infrastructure work.
Today’s session will bring us data in the form of new motor vehicle sales, at 11:30am, AEST.