Global markets were mostly stronger overnight, with the gains coming despite worsening tensions in Iraq.
After treading water for most the session, Wall Street bounced strongly in the final hours of trading following the Fed meeting for June.
In somewhat of a surprise, Fed chair, Janet Yellen, indicated she was in no hurry to raise interest rates, which contrasted with her more hawkish tone in last month’s meeting.
The FOMC statement also contained a relatively more upbeat assessment of the US economy, helping the S&P500 score its biggest one day gain in four weeks.
In Europe, energy producers were among the strongest performers following the recent surge in Brent crude prices due to the Iraqi violence.
There was further volatility in oil markets, with the spread between Brent and WTI oil futures widening further on reports militants set Iraq’s main oil refinery on fire.
Nickel was sold off again, this time after data showed LME nickel inventories hitting a record high.
Janet Yellen’s dovish comments triggered a modest gain in gold, whilst the US dollar suffered a hefty decline against the Aussie.