European equities rose while Japanese stocks led shares in Asia lower as persistent concern over market volatility helped strengthen the yen. Oil climbed back above $28 a barrel before an update on U.S. stockpiles.
The Stoxx Europe Index snapped a seven-day decline while Japan’s Topix index slid to its lowest since October 2014 as a gauge of the nation’s equity volatility soared. The Straits Times Index in Singapore sank the most in three weeks while the yen strengthened a third day and gold resumed its advance.The Europe Index advanced 2.1 percent moving out of so-called “oversold” territory. The equity benchmark now trades at 13.8 times estimated earnings,about 21 percent below its April 2015 peak. A gauge tracking stock swings has jumped 49 percent this year.
Concern over the creditworthiness of European banks and oil’s decline sent equities reeling in the past week, ensuring investors will focus on Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s testimony before U.S. Congress Wednesday. After the Bank of Japan’s move into negative interest rates largely failed to assuage market jitters, Yellen will need to calibrate her commentary carefully to avoid further fueling volatility.
Meanwhile, Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index expiring in March rose 0.9 percent. As well as Yellen’s testimony before Congress, investors will look to corporate results Wednesday for indications of the health of the world’s biggest economy.
Time Warner Inc. and Cisco Systems Inc. are among companies posting earnings. With the U.S. reporting season more than half way through, about 77 percent of S&P 500 members that have had results so far beat profit estimates, while less than half have beaten sales projections. Analysts estimate earnings at companies in the gauge fell 4.5 percent in the fourth quarter, better than Jan. 15 predictions for a 7 percent slump. Carlsberg A/S gained 4.6 percent after the brewer reported a smaller-than-projected drop in quarterly profit and forecast higher earnings this year.