Moreover, the US non-manufacturing index beat analyst estimates as it climbed to 56 in the previous month, higher than the January reading of 55.2.
In Europe the UK’s FTSE increased 86 points (+1.4%) to settle at 6432 whilst Germany’s DAX rose 179 points (+2.3%) to settle at 7870. France’s CAC added a further 77 points (+2.1%) to settle at 3787.
Stateside, the Dow Jones surged to its highest closing level ever, finally overcoming the losses tied to the financial crisis on the back of a tenacious stock rally that began in March 2009.
The Dow added 126 points (+0.9%) to settle at 14254, whilst the S&P climbed 15 points (+1%) to settle at 1540. The Nasdaq increased 42 points (+1.3%) to settle at 3224.
In the commodity space, crude oil and gold finished higher for the same reasons equity markets rallied. Crude oil for April delivery climbed $0.70 to settle at $90.82 per barrel whilst gold futures for April delivery added a further $2.50 (+0.2%) to settle at $1,574.90 per ounce.
In the currency space, the Japanese yen finished higher against the US dollar just before the BoJ holds its two-day meeting. The US dollar finished lower against the yen as positive sentiment decreased the demand for the greenback’s safety.
Today will see the release of the GDP data (11:30am, AEDT).