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Asia shares fall as Treasury yields hit fresh highs

Asia’s share markets fell on Wednesday as U.S. Treasury yields hit fresh two-year highs and a global technology stock sell-off unsettled investors worrying about inflation and bracing for tighter U.S. monetary policy. Oil prices hit their highest since 2014 amid an outage on a pipeline from Iraq to Turkey and global political tensions, stoking fears of inflation becoming more persistent and propping up the dollar, which hovered near one-week highs. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan reflected the sombre tone, losing 0.7% in mid-afternoon trade after closing lower ...

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Asian shares drop as bond yields rise ahead of Fed

Asia’s share markets turned negative on Tuesday as two-year U.S. Treasury yields topped 1% for the first time in almost two years with investors weighing the risks of a Fed policy rate rise as soon as March. Early European markets on Tuesday were also slightly weaker. However, oil prices rose to their highest level in more than seven years over concerns about supply shocks after Yemen’s Houthi group attacked the United Arab Emirates. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged higher earlier in the session as much as ...

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European stocks gain ahead of earnings; China adds stimulus

European shares were slightly higher in early trading on Monday as investors focused on company earnings and U.S. Federal Reserve policymakers entered a quiet period ahead of their meeting next week. Stock market moves in Asian trading were small and economic data from China was mixed: industrial output picking up but retail sales missed expectations. China’s central bank unexpectedly eased policy by cutting rates on medium-term loans. Analysts expect more policy easing as growth in the world’s second-largest economy has shown signs of slowing from its rapid rebound after the ...

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Election risk? No sweat for bond investors in Italy, France

Bond market calm in the face of a possible government shake-up in Italy and French elections in April offers proof, if any were needed, that Europe’s display of solidarity during the pandemic has all but wiped out euro break-up risks. The run-up to these events is very different from 2017 and 2018, when the prospect of a far-right, eurosceptic French presidency and Italian politicians’ clashes with Brussels respectively set euro zone break-up gauges aflame. Fears of ‘Frexit’ and ‘Quitaly’ – the risk that these countries would ditch the single currency, ...

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Key events in developed markets next week

Four rate hikes expected in the US regardless of this week’s data Financial markets are firmly behind the view that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates four times this year and will soon seek to shrink the $8.8tn of assets it has on its balance sheet. There will be little to alter this belief in the coming week with housing data and regional business surveys the most significant releases in what is a holiday shortened week. We will be looking to see what sort of hit the Omicron wave ...

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Key events in EMEA next week

Russia: Macro full house The Russian current account surplus for 4Q21 is likely to be reported at a solid $40-45bn leading to $120-125bn full-year figure. Russia’s current account is likely to remain strong in 2022 as well, thanks to strong commodities on the one hand, and still restrained foreign travel on the other. Elevated FX purchases announced for January could be seen as only a minor setback for the ruble, given the expected $40-45bn current account surplus for 1Q22. Nevertheless, this does not mean cloudless skies for the ruble, given ...

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Global bond funds see outflows on expectations of faster Fed rate moves

Global bond funds faced their first weekly outflow in four weeks in the seven days to Jan. 12 on expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise rates as many as four times this year, triggered by elevated levels of inflation. Investors sold global bond funds of $2.25 billion, marking their first weekly net selling since Dec. 15, Refinitiv Lipper data showed. Last week, Fed minutes from its December meeting showed that policymakers agreed to hasten the end of their pandemic-era program of bond purchases, and signalled the central bank ...

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Investors ready for U.S. earnings as inflation worries run high

U.S. companies will post results in the coming weeks on the final quarter of 2021 as investors worry about inflation’s impact on earnings and pressure on the Federal Reserve to speed up the timeline for kicking off interest rate hikes. The concerns, along with caution tied to the fast-spreading COVID-19 Omicron variant, have driven a recent market sell-off, led by Nasdaq and shares of technology and other big growth companies that have benefited from low interest rates. Year-over-year profit growth for S&P 500 companies is expected to be lower in ...

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European stocks set for worst week since November on hawkish Fed comments

European stocks slumped on Friday, with the STOXX 600 set for its biggest weekly loss since November, and Wall Street futures pointed to a mixed opening in the United States as investor expectations firmed for U.S. rate hikes to begin in March. Asian shares fell after Fed Governor Lael Brainard became the latest and most senior U.S. central banker to indicate that the U.S. Federal Reserve will hike rates in March. Other Fed officials have also shown their willingness to raise rates, after data this week showed U.S. consumer prices ...

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Stabilisation signs emerge after inflation palpations

Jittery global financial markets saw signs of stabilisation on Thursday, with major equity bourses and bond yields holding their ground and the dollar wilting after the highest U.S. inflation reading in nearly 40 years. The 7% year-on-year U.S. consumer price inflation reading was the highest since 1982, but after weeks of Federal Reserve officials talking about faster interest rate hikes and stimulus withdrawal it had been widely expected. MSCI’s 50-country index of world stocks barely budged, little changed from where it started the year, while Europe dipped fractionally after two ...

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Stabilisation signs emerge after inflation palpations

Jittery global financial markets saw signs of stabilisation on Thursday, with major equity bourses and bond yields holding their ground and the dollar wilting after the highest U.S. inflation reading in nearly 40 years. The 7% year-on-year U.S. consumer price inflation reading was the highest since 1982, but after weeks of Federal Reserve officials talking about faster interest rate hikes and stimulus withdrawal it had been widely expected. MSCI’s 50-country index of world stocks barely budged, little changed from where it started the year, while Europe dipped fractionally after two ...

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Forget shareholder resolutions, fund manager says: hire better directors

A Texas-based fund manager is not jumping on the bandwagon of peers backing shareholder resolutions that call on companies to take stronger action on climate change. Dimensional Fund Advisors argues it would be more effective to just replace corporate directors who fail to address the issue. Austin-based Dimensional backed just a tiny fraction of the climate-related shareholder resolutions tracked by Boston-based advocacy group Ceres last year. Firm executives said the measures demanding everything from emissions reports to contingencies for extreme temperatures can be ineffective or not material to investors, even ...

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Stocks sag as U.S. yields climb higher

Stock markets struggled on Monday as U.S. Treasury yields reached a new two-year high and investors fretted about the prospect of rising interest rates and a surge in COVID-19 infections. The small fall on Monday follows on from a bruising first week of the year when a strong signal from the Federal Reserve that it would tighten policy faster to tackle inflation, and then data showing a strong U.S. labour market, unnerved investors who had pushed equities to record highs over the holiday period. Technology stocks, which have soared the ...

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Asia Morning Bytes

Macro outlook Global: Markets focused on the sharp fall in the unemployment rate after Friday’s US labour report was released, largely ignoring a much softer non-farm payrolls figure. The resulting sell-off in equities was not large, and Asian equity futures are looking more mixed than down early this Monday, offering no strong directional clues to trading. US Treasury markets also sold off, though not that much, with the 2Y US treasury (UST2) actually showing a small (-0.2bp) decline in yields against the 4.1bp rise in 10Y UST yields. Little change ...

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Wall St Week Ahead-Hawkish Fed gives value stocks a second wind

Investors are recalibrating their portfolios to account for a more hawkish Federal Reserve, as signs that the central bank is ready to pull out the stops in its fight against inflation has shaken up markets in the first week of 2022. Yields on the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury are on track for their biggest weekly gain since September, 2019, while technology and growth stocks have tumbled and investors snapped up shares of banks, energy firms and other economically sensitive companies. The action is broadly reminiscent of how markets started 2021, ...

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