Global markets rallied overnight, as investors switched their attention from the troubles in Ukraine to positive economic developments in the US.
Although New York-area manufacturing activity expanded at a smaller-than-expected pace, other data showed a bigger-than-expected jump in American industrial production last month.
It was enough to ignite a long-awaited surge on Wall Street, which has been weighed down recently by the Ukrainian crisis and the threat of trade sanctions against Russia.
However in a statement last night, President Obama, announced only limited sanctions that target Russian President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle.
The surge in global equities diminished the safe haven appeal of gold, which gave back some of its recent gains.
Oil also weakened, as investors discounted the likelihood of crude supply disruptions in the wake of Crimea’s vote to join Russia.
In currency markets, the euro climbed versus the greenback even though the eurozone’s annual inflation rate was revised lower.
The Aussie strengthened versus its US counterpart ahead of today’s RBA meeting minutes for March, which are likely to reveal no change to the central bank’s neutral bias.
In economic developments, the RBA March meeting minutes are scheduled for release at 11:30am, AEDT.