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Asia markets set for higher open, following fresh record closes on Wall Street

CNBC logo CNBC 16-08-2016 Saheli Roy Choudhury

Futures pointed to a higher open for Asian markets on Tuesday, likely getting a boost from fresh record closes in the U.S. for the second time in less than a week amid rising oil prices. 

Australia's SPI futures traded at 5,503, only a touch lower than the ASX 200 (.AXJO)'s last close at 5,539.96. Nikkei (.N225) futures in Chicago traded at 16,880 while Osaka futures were at 16,870. The Japanese benchmark index finished the Monday session at 16,869.56.

Stateside, the Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI) rose 0.32 percent to 18,636.05, while the S&P 500 index (.SPX) closed 0.28 percent higher at 2,190.15. The Nasdaq (.IXIC) composite rose 0.56 percent to 5,262.02. All three indexes set record highs.

Oil prices extended their rally on Monday, with global benchmark Brent advancing 2.9 percent to $48.35 a barrel. U.S. crude futures rose 2.8 percent to $45.74.

Sentiment toward oil was likely boosted by speculation that the world's oil producers might finally move to tackle the global supply glut, with prices likely getting an additional fillip from data showing drawdowns in U.S. crude inventory. 

Reuters reported data from market intelligence firm Genscape estimating a drawdown of more than 350,000 barrels at the Cushing, Oklahoma delivery point for U.S. crude last week.

"The levity seen in oil prices spread throughout the rest of the commodity complex, assisted by some U.S. dollar weakness," said Angus Nicholson, a market analyst at brokerage firm IG.

But chances of global producers agreeing to actions to reduce their oil production appeared minimal, especially during September's OPEC meeting.

"The Saudis are happy to commit to some sort of OPEC-wide supply freeze deal so long as Iran is party to it. And Iran refuses to agree to any deal that will inhibit them from lifting their oil output to pre-sanctions level," explained Nicholson.

The British pound (GBPUSD=) remained near more than 30 year lows against the dollar, trading at $1.2885 as of 6:51 a.m. HK/SIN, amid expectations the Bank of England would likely take further easing steps in the months ahead.

The dollar (=USD) last traded at 95.629 against a basket of currencies in a relatively quiet session.

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