On Wednesday, the world stock markets climbed after the fourth-quarter earnings season closed into a positive start in the U.S. with the aluminum giant Alcoa estimating higher demand for 2013. A demand for aluminum has been hurt by the weak global economy, but the Alcoa predicted a 7 % increase in demand this year, a bit better than the 6 % increase in 2012. Because the Alcoa supplies so many key industries, the investors study its yields for clues about the health and direction of the overall economy.
The European stocks closed slightly up in early trading. Britain's FTSE 100 climbed 0.3 % to 6,073.32 while France's CAC-40 jumped almost 0.1 % to 3,707.28.
While, Germany's DAX was flat, at 7,699.18, after the official figures indicated the industrial production climbed less than expected in November. The 0.2 % gain was also not enough to offset a 2 % decline the previous month and means the German economic output overall likely down in the fourth quarter.
On Wall Street, the stocks appeared headed for gains. The Dow Jones industrial futures climbed up 0.1 % at 13,278 and the S&P 500 futures jumped almost 0.1 % to 1,452.60. The U.S. markets were finished by the time Alcoa reported its results.
In Asia, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.5 % to 23,218.47 after a downturn in the prior session, with a sentiment assisted by gains in the mainland Chinese shares.
The Australia's S&P/ASX 200 jumped 0.4 % to 4,708.10. South Korea's Kopsi was lower 0.3 % at 1,991.20. Benchmarks in Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and the Philippines advanced. Indonesia and Malaysia were down. The Mainland Chinese stocks were mixed.