U.S. stocks are rising this morning, as Japan made the surprising announcement that it would expand on its stimulus program. The Bank of Japan said it will increase its holdings of government bonds by $723 billion and lift exchange-traded fund purchases by 3 trillion yen.
Asian markets are all sharply higher, rising on news of Japan's stimulus plans, which pushed the yen to a fresh six-year low. The Nikkei jumped 4.8% while the Hang Seng rose 1.25%.
European markets are also climbing Friday, also in reaction to the news from the Bank of Japan, which is lifting all the major global markets. The FTSE is up 1.25%, and the DAX is up 1.9%.
Energy futures are mixed today. The price for West Texas Intermediate crude oil is $80.40 per barrel, down $0.72 and natural gas is up $0.106. Metals prices are falling this morning. Gold is down $24.50 and platinum is down $12.50. The Dollar is down versus both the Euro and up versus the Yen.
Boston Beer Co. Inc. (SAM), Expedia Inc. (EXPE) and Groupon, Inc. (GRPN) are rising, while Newmont Mining Corporation (NEM), Trimble Navigation Limited (TRMB) and Starbucks Corporation (SBUX) are down.
Michael Fowlkes is a financial writer who has been with the Fresh Brewed Media family since 2004. Over the course of his tenure with Fresh Brewed Media, he has worn many hats, including portfolio manager, options analyst, and writer. Michael received his undergraduate degree from Virginia Tech in Accounting and got his start in finance working as a stock trader for six years at Chase Investment Counsel in Charlottesville, Va.