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(Kitco News) – World stock markets were mostly higher Wednesday as higher raw commodity prices, led by crude oil, supported the shares. U.S. stock indexes are set for narrowly mixed openings when the New York day session begins.
Gold prices are weaker on a corrective pullback from recent gains.
Focus of the marketplace Wednesday is on the afternoon release of the minutes from the last Federal Open Market Committee meeting in mid-March, at which time the Fed raised interest rates. Market watchers will examine the minutes for any clues on the timing of future Fed rate increases.
Wednesday morning's U.S. national ADP report for March will also be closely examined. The report is expected to show 180,000 jobs were created last month.
Traders and investors will be closely watching the meetings between U.S.
President Donald Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping on Thursday and Friday.
The U.S. employment report is also due out Friday morning.
In overnight news, the Euro zone's Markit composite purchasing managers survey (PMI) rose to 56.4 in March from 56.0 in February. The March reading was the highest in six years and continues a string of mostly upbeat economic data coming out of the European Union.
The key outside markets on Wednesday morning see the U.S. dollar index near steady. The index has seen a solid rebound from a 3.5-month low hit last week and the bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage. Meantime, Nymex crude oil prices are modestly higher and hit a four-week high overnight. The oil bulls have upside technical momentum to suggest prices can at least trade sideways, if not sideways to higher, in the near term.
U.S. economic data due for release Wednesday includes the weekly MBA mortgage applications survey, the ADP national employment report, the U.S.services PMI, the ISM non-manufacturing report on business, the global services PMI, the FOMC minutes, and the weekly DOE liquid energy stocks report.