Asian Equities Mixed as Traders Eye Rate Decisions: Markets Wrap

(Bloomberg) — Asian stocks were mixed while US and European equity futures inched higher Monday as investors awaited interest rate decisions this week from the US, Europe, China and Japan. Major currencies and Treasuries were little changed.

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Japan’s Topix index added 0.7% while Hong Kong’s benchmark fluctuated. Futures for Euro Stoxx 50 climbed 0.4% and contracts for the S&P 500 added 0.1% after the underlying index crept further into bull-market territory on Friday.

Concerns over growth in China remain while in the US technology shares have continued to climb amid bets the Federal Reserve is nearing the end of its hiking cycle. Positioning in rates markets suggests one more Fed hike, with the likelihood that the move comes next month rather than this Wednesday.

Yet there is also concern that the Fed’s ten hikes have done damage, which has bond managers including Fidelity International to Allianz Global Investors forecasting an economic downturn. Meanwhile, unexpected hikes last week from the Bank of Canada and the Reserve Bank of Australia have added an extra element of uncertainty.

The European Central Bank is projected to lift its benchmark rate Thursday, there’s an outside chance of China cutting its medium-term lending facility the same day and the Bank of Japan is expected to stand pat on Friday.

Solita Marcelli, chief investment officer Americas at UBS Global Wealth Management, cautioned against assuming the recent upswing in equities can gain momentum after the S&P 500 already rose 20% from its recent low.

“While many investors believe that passing this milestone puts markets in bull territory, it remains possible that we are seeing a bear market rally — a period of strong gains that occurs in the middle of a bear market,” she said. “Until markets reach a new all-time high, it’s impossible to know whether the bear market trough —the ultimate low of the market cycle — is behind us.”

In currency markets Monday, the dollar was little changed versus the yen, the euro and the offshore yuan.

Treasury yields were little changed after rising Friday following disappointing employment data from Canada. The country’s economy ended its eight-month run of employment gains with minor job losses in May, signaling weakness in the labor market.

Oil held losses amid persistent concerns around the demand outlook as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. cut its price forecast again. Brent futures traded below $75 a barrel and West Texas Intermediate was below $70.

Key events this week:

  • US CPI, Tuesday

  • FOMC begins two-day meeting, Tuesday

  • Eurozone industrial production, Wednesday

  • US PPI, Wednesday

  • FOMC rate decision, Wednesday

  • IEA oil market report released, Wednesday

  • China central bank meeting to decide on one-year policy loan rate, Thursday

  • China property prices, retail sales, industrial production, Thursday

  • ECB rate decision, Thursday

  • US initial jobless claims, retail sales, empire manufacturing, business inventories, industrial production

  • Eurozone CPI, Friday

  • Japan BOJ rate decision, Friday

  • US University of Michigan consumer sentiment, Friday

Some of the major moves in markets:


  • S&P 500 futures rose 0.1% as of 10:36 a.m. Tokyo time. The S&P 500 rose 0.1% Friday

  • Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.2%. The Nasdaq 100 rose 0.3% Friday

  • Japan’s Topix rose 0.7%

  • Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.1%

  • The Shanghai Composite fell 0.5%

  • Euro Stoxx 50 futures rose 0.4%


  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed

  • The euro was little changed at $1.0743

  • The Japanese yen was little changed at 139.45 per dollar

  • The offshore yuan fell 0.1% to 7.1513 per dollar

  • The Australian dollar was little changed at $0.6743


  • Bitcoin fell 0.8% to $25,922.48

  • Ether fell 1.4% to $1,745.79


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries was little changed at 3.74%

  • Japan’s 10-year yield was unchanged at 0.420%

  • Australia’s 10-year yield declined six basis points to 3.95%


  • West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.9% to $69.52 a barrel

  • Spot gold fell 0.2% to $1,956.92 an ounce

This story was produced with the assistance of Bloomberg Automation.

–With assistance from Carly Wanna and Isabelle Lee.

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