Major US indices hit new all-time highs overnight, while the local stock market could be poised for a weak start to the session as the reporting season progresses.

Important points:

  • US stocks closed the session highs
  • Bitcoin price soared over $ 50,000 for the first time
  • According to Westpac, earnings have improved and loan deferrals continue to decline

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and Nasdaq Composite all hit new records in early trading on Wall Street.

Investors piled into stocks and sold government bonds to bet that COVID-19 vaccinations and US stimulus measures would result in sustained economic recovery after a year of lockdown.

US President Joe Biden continues his campaign for $ 1.9 trillion ($ 2.44 trillion) of pandemic relief.

However, US stocks closed the session highs – the Dow Jones rose 0.2 percent to 31,522 points while the S&P 500 (-0.1 percent) and Nasdaq (-0.3 percent) were red recorded.

Oil prices hovered near the 13-month high aided by a cold snap that closed wells in the largest US oil producing state, Texas.

“Russia’s weak production was additional support for the rise in oil prices – the first time they failed to meet their quota, which allowed them to increase production,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA.

The price of Bitcoin in cryptocurrency surged above $ 50,000 for the first time.

Westpac sees “good start to the year”

Westpac said its net income improved in the December quarter, while mortgage deferrals continued to decline.

At the end of January, Westpac mortgages were set aside for around $ 11 billion, compared to $ 16.6 billion in late October and nearly $ 55 billion in home loan deferrals at peak times.

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“It was a good start to the year, with higher earnings, a stronger economy and solid progress on our … strategic priorities,” said Peter King, Westpac CEO.

Mr. King said the bank’s home loan book had changed “little,” but applications had increased significantly.

The SPI 200 futures were 0.3 percent lower, indicating possible declines for the Australian stock market if it opens for trading.

The Australian dollar was weaker against most currencies, buying about 77.6 US cents.

The company’s reporting season continues. Mining giant Rio Tinto will publish its full year results after the market closes.

On Tuesday, rival BHP announced a record dividend payment to shareholders after higher iron ore prices boosted underlying earnings.

ABC / Reuters