Japan, Australian Stock Futures Rise on U.S. Employment

Japanese and Australian stock futures rose after better-than-forecast jobs data in the U.S. eased investor concern that growth is slowing in the world’s largest economy.

American Depositary Receipts of Komatsu Ltd., a Japanese machinery maker that gets a quarter of its sales in the Americas, advanced 1.6 percent. BHP Billiton Ltd., the world’s largest miner, may be active after metal prices advanced. ADRs of Toyota Motor Corp. climbed 3.8 percent after Asia’s biggest carmaker reported first-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates. All Nippon Airways Co., Asia’s No. 1 listed carrier by sales, may move after reporting profit increased.

Futures on Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average expiring in September closed at 8,675 in Chicago Aug. 3, up from 8,540 in Osaka, Japan. They were bid in the pre-market at 8,680 in Osaka, at 8:05 a.m. local time. Futures on Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index advanced 1.4 percent today. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index rose 0.2 percent in Wellington.

“The outlook that is priced into equities is overly pessimistic,” said Michael Kurtz, Hong Kong-based global chief equity strategist at Nomura Holdings Inc., Japan’s largest brokerage. “We maintain a bullish view on global equities.”

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index were little changed. The S&P 500 surged 1.9 percent on Aug. 3 after a Labor Department report showed American payrolls climbed more than forecast even as the jobless rate unexpectedly rose.

Europe Debt

The rally in stocks gained strength as members of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s coalition parties signaled they won’t stand in the way of European Central Bank President Mario Draghi’s bond plan to relieve the region’s debt crisis.

Draghi has signaled the ECB intends to join forces with governments to buy bonds, while conceding that Germany’s Bundesbank had reservations about the plan.

The MSCI Asia-Pacific gained 7.3 percent from this year’s lowest level in June through Aug. 3 amid speculation central banks from the U.S. to China and Europe would step up efforts to stimulate economic growth. The gauge climbed 2.8 percent this year.

The regional benchmark traded at 12 times estimated earnings, compared with 13.5 for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index and 11.4 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The Thomson Reuters/Jefferies CRB Index of raw materials climbed 2.1 percent Aug. 3. The London Metal Exchange Index of prices for six industrial metals including copper and aluminum gained 1.6 percent.

The Bloomberg China-US Equity Index of the most-traded Chinese companies in the U.S. rose 2 percent to 87.40 in New York on Aug 3.

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