Obama Victory Boosts US Dollar, Asian Stocks

05 November 2008

SYDNEY: Tuesday's stunning presidential victory of Senator Barack Obama boosted both the US dollar and stocks across the Asia-Pacific markets, as the world's hopes soared for a clean political and commercial sweep by America's new broom.

Hong Kong shares rocketed 5.7%  by midday (local time) while Japan's Nikkei stock index was up 2.5% later in the day. Singapore saw share prices rise 4.4% and Australian stock  2.7%  in Sydney.

"We're seeing the Obama rally," said Patrick Crabb, senior sales trader at Goldman Sachs JB Were in Melbourne, while Kazuhiro Takahashi, general manager at Japan's Daiwa Securities observed: "Markets generally favour a Republican government. But this belief has collapsed amid the financial crisis."

His compatriot Saburo Matsumoto, chief foreign exchange  strategist at Sumitomo Trust Bank, said that Obama is expected to "bring change to the country amid an unprecedented crisis".

He added: "Even if economic figures and sentiment remain grim, markets still have high expectations for the policies that he will iron out from January."

The 47-year old US president elect will be inaugurated on January 20, amid national and global economies at their lowest nadir since the 1930s.

Data sourced from Sydney Morning Herald; additional content by WARC staff