Global stocks mostly rose Wednesday a day before Britain's vote on whether to remain in the European Union, and after U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said the central bank will remain cautious in raising interest rates.
KEEPING SCORE: Britain's FTSE 100 was up 0.5 percent to 6,259 and Germany's DAX was 0.7 percent higher at 10,082. France's CAC 40 rose 0.5 percent to 4,388. U.S. futures indicated small gains on Wall Street, with S&P 500 and Dow futures each up 0.1 percent.
BRITAIN-EU: Campaigners on both sides of Thursday's crucial vote on whether Britain should remain in the EU began the final frantic day of campaigning. Polls indicate it will be a tight race but bookies are giving the "remain'' camp a higher probability of winning. Many voters remain undecided and bookies and investors appear to be betting that they will settle for the status quo. International experts, including Yellen, have said that a British exit would cause a lot of volatility in global markets and uncertainty for the world economy.
ANALYST VIEWPOINT: "With the 'undecided' vote still at a significant level, the swing factor to either side continues to remain a real possibility,'' said Nicholas Teo, trading strategist at KGI Fraser Securities. "With the outcome still too close to call, traders have taken big bets off the table, riding only on small positions leftover.''
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 42 cents to $48.95 a barrel in New York. On Tuesday, it fell 52 cents. Brent crude, the benchmark for international oil prices, was up 26 cents at $51.51 a barrel in London. On Tuesday, it slipped 3 cents.
CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 104.62 yen from 104.76 yen the previous day. The euro rose to $1.1298 from $1.1251 on Tuesday. The pound continued to rise, to $1.4687 from $1.4650.