Talk of more action to prop up oil markets from Saudi Arabia and other producers in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) also supported crude prices.
Bloomberg in a report on Wednesday cited a Saudi official saying that the world’s top exporter is in talks with other producers to take action to halt the oil price slide.
“Trade war rhetoric will continue to guide markets, but the comments from Saudi Arabia could lead to unprecedented action to stabilize prices,” Alfonso Esparza, a Toronto-based senior market analyst at Oanda, told Reuters.
“It is hard to imagine what that would look like given how hard it was to get the OPEC+ to agree to the production limit agreement, but given the potential free fall from crude if the trade war continues, no option is off the table.”
Asian shares rose early on Thursday as data showed Chinese exports rose 3.3 percent in July from a year earlier, when analysts had looked for a fall of 2 percent, while imports also declined by less than expected.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan bounced 0.6 percent, though it was still down more than 7 percent over the past two weeks.
“Financial markets are raising risks of recession,” JPMorgan economist Joseph Lupton told Reuters.
“Equities continue to slide and volatility has spiked, but the alarm bell is loudest in rates markets, where the yield curve inverted the most since just before the start of the financial crisis,” he added.
Middle East markets
Most stock markets in the region added gains on Wednesday.
Saudi Arabia's index rose 1.1 percent with Riyad Bank increasing 4.4 percent and Al Rajhi Bank gaining 1.1 percent.
Dubai's index was up 1.2 percent as Dubai Islamic Bank advanced 2 percent and Emirates NBD traded 1.8 percent up.
In Abu Dhabi, the index gained 0.7 percent with First Abu Dhabi Bank edging up 0.5 percent and Emirates Telecommunications Group climbing 2 percent.
Qatar’s index also rose 1.2 percent. Qatar Islamic Bank increased 1.7 percent while Qatar Gas Transport closed 4.1 percent higher.
Egypt’s blue-chip index EGX30 gained 1.7 percent, Kuwait’s premier market index added 0.6 percent while Bahrain’s index edged 0.1 percent lower and Oman’s index added 0.9 percent.
The dollar dropped early on Thursday.
The dollar index .DXY, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies dropped to 97.523 from a recent peak of 98.932.
Gold prices rose on a weaker dollar.
Spot gold rose 0.3 percent to $1,505 per ounce as of 0104 GMT.
US gold futures were down 0.3 percent at $1,515.30 an ounce.
(Reporting by Gerard Aoun; Editing by Seban Scaria)
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