China manufacturing returns to growth in March

ASEAN PMI MArch 2019

Additionally, a report from the Commerce Department may partly offset the positive sentiment generated by the upbeat manufacturing data released on Monday. Indeed, the NASDAQ and the S&P 500 is up 0.92% and 0.64%, respectively.

"Our view is the impact of policy easing is gradually kicking in, pushing up sequential growth indicators such as PMI first", wrote China economists at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

LONDON, April 1 (Reuters) - Global stocks surged higher on Monday, extending gains from their best quarter in almost 10 years, as strong Chinese factory activity data and signs of progress in U.S.

The figures gave big relief to investors who were battling fears of a global economic downturn.

At the data front, the US durable goods report is due Tuesday.

On the trade front, U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday talks with China were going very well, but cautioned he would not accept anything less than a "great deal" after top U.S. and Chinese trade officials wrapped up two days of negotiations in Beijing.

In Japan, the closely watched "tankan" survey by the Bank of Japan showed worsening business confidence among the country's big manufacturers in the first quarter. Brent was 1.3 percent higher at $68.46 per barrel.

The strong factory data from the US and China helped in easing concerns over the global economy.

Supply cuts by members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other major producers had been pushing prices overshadowing concerns on growth and resulting slump in demand.

Germany's trade-sensitive DAX outperformed with a 1 percent rise helped by gains in auto maker stocks.

Is China's rapid economic slowdown already back to recovering?

Both Caixin/Markit Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index and China's official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) grew in March, surprising analysts.

On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite surged 2.58% to 3,170.36, and the smaller, technology-heavy Shenzhen Composite wash ahead 3.57% at 1,755.67.

The Nikkei 225 screamed higher 303.22 points, or 1.4%, to 21,509.03, as shares of index heavyweights Fast Retailing, Softbank Group and Fanuc all advanced.

The pound was down 0.1 percent at $1.3022. The Stoxx 600 index inched up but most sectors and bourses swung in opposite directions. Strong China data for March pushed up basic resources by more than 2 percent.

Phin Ziebell senior economist at National Australia Bank in Sydney warned that future gains in oil prices will be hard because of the potential softness in the global economy and the scope for higher US oil production.

China has made proposals in talks with the United States on a range of issues that go further than it has before, including on forced technology transfer, as the two sides work to overcome obstacles to a deal to end their protracted trade war, USA officials told Reuters.

Meanwhile, palladium futures added 0.5% to $1,348.15 an ounce, while platinum dipped 0.6% to $849.40 an ounce.

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