27 October 2016

Oil prices were stable on Thursday, but remained below $50 a barrel, as doubts over OPEC's ability to organize a coordinated production cut weighed on markets, while firm demand and concerns over Venezuela's stability offered support.

In Venezuela, spreading and increasingly violent protests against the government sparked fear in the oil industry that the country's oil production could be affected.

Asian shares edged down on Thursday after disappointing earnings from technology giant Apple dragged on Wall Street.

Gulf stock markets saw lacklustre trade on Wednesday as low oil prices and weak earnings weighed on investor sentiment.

Gold prices inched down on Thursday to extend losses from the previous session as the U.S. dollar steadied against the yen, but underlying demand for bullion was seen as robust ahead of major festivals in India.

The dollar edged up against the yen early on Thursday while the euro and sterling held their gains versus the greenback, with a rise in bond yields supporting the currencies.

In the latest news, Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said on Thursday the central bank would not try to push down super-long government bond yields - even if they rise further - because it is focused on controlling the yield curve for out to 10 years.

A series of strong earthquakes rocked a wide area of central Italy on Wednesday, striking fear among residents rattled by a deadly tremor in August, but there were no reports of casualties and few serious injuries.

Belgian politicians failed to break their deadlock over a planned EU-Canada free trade agreement on Wednesday, but agreed to resume talks on Thursday in a sign they may be nearing a consensus that would keep the deal alive.

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