April 1, 2023

Dubai Week

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Bad days ahead for US stocks in 2023

US stocks continued their disappointing start to last week amid growing expectations that the Federal Reserve will continue to impose its tight monetary policies for longer than expected at the start of the year.

After higher-than-expected inflation data emerged last week, subsequent statements by Federal Reserve officials confirmed their desire to keep interest rates above the 5% level for a longer period of time; U.S. stock indexes fell on Tuesday, posting their worst day in a new year that saw strong gains in its first month.

In the first day of trading of the week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 697 points simultaneously, more than 2% of its value, and the S&P 500 index fell 2 due to the President’s Day holiday on Monday. %, losses for the Nasdaq index, most sensitive to interest rate expectations, were 2.5%.

At the same time, the yield on the ten-year bond rose to 3.90%, while the yield on the two-year bond hit 4.7%, both levels we haven’t seen since last November. Dealers opined that the stock market “is now reflecting what the bond market has been trying to tell us about interest rate expectations over the past two weeks.”

The focus on broader financial markets is on the minutes of the latest Federal Reserve meeting, Wednesday, after the latest data increased the odds of continued monetary tightening.

European shares also fell on Tuesday, after strong economic data raised expectations of higher interest rates and London-listed HSBC shares rose amid a rise in quarterly profit.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.2%, after data showed French and German economic activity returned to growth territory, as central bank officials eased their worries over interest-hike decisions.

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Similarly, positive numbers for the services sector in Europe indicate that the recovery in activity has gathered steam.

The interest rate-sensitive technology sector index fell 1.5%.

In a related vein, Brent crude fell more than 1% in a volatile session on Tuesday, as lingering concerns over global economic growth overshadowed the impact of a fall in supply, prompting investors to sell. Take profit after previous day’s gains.

Brent crude was down $1.02, or 1.2%, at $83.05 a barrel, while US West Texas crude for March delivery was down 18 cents, or 0.2%, at $76.16 a barrel.

“It looks like we’ve entered a period of decline because of interest rate concerns,” Bill Flynn, an analyst at Price Futures Group, told Reuters.