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Mettis Global News
Mettis Global News
Mettis Global News

CPI Preview: Inflation to fall below 14% YoY in May

Asian stocks rise as Yen, Won begin to reverse dip

Asian markets drop as traders eye later Fed cuts
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April 18, 2024 (MLN): Stocks in Asia rose Thursday as pushback from authorities against a stronger dollar helped stabilize currencies and restored a sense of confidence in the region’s financial markets, as Bloomberg reported.

The yen and won climbed against the dollar following a joint statement from US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen alongside the finance ministers of Japan and South Korea that noted “serious concerns” about the depreciation of the two Asian currencies.

A global gauge of emerging market currencies was heading for second day of gains, suggesting some stability after hitting their lowest level for the year this week.

“The US has effectively given the nod on intervention,” said Keiichi Iguchi, a senior strategist at Resona Holdings Inc. in Tokyo. “This has increased speculation that a coordinated intervention is a possibility.”

An index of the dollar fell for a second day. Treasuries were little changed after a Wednesday rally that wiped eight basis points from the 10-year yield.

The offshore yuan was steady after the People’s Bank of China reiterated that it wants to prevent risk of the exchange rate overshooting, according to a statement posted on WeChat.

Equities in China, Japan, Australia and South Korea all rose. A global stocks gauge ticked higher, placing the benchmark on track for its first advance since Thursday last week.

“The rebound in stocks is mainly related to the drop” in Treasury yields, which led to a pretty notable correction in the dollar overnight, said Dong Chen, chief Asia strategist at Banque Pictet.

This appears to be a relief rally as “there is still quite some uncertainty regarding US yields from here, depending on inflation readings in the coming months,” he said.

US equity futures were higher after the S&P 500 fell for a fourth day Wednesday, the longest losing streak since January. The benchmark has now dropped more than 4% from last month’s record high.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 declined 1.2% Wednesday with Nvidia Corp. leading losses among US megacaps.

Chip Stocks

Traders will be closely watching Asian chipmakers such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., which reports earnings later Thursday, and Tokyo Electron Ltd. Europe’s most valuable tech firm ASML Holding NV said Wednesday that orders tumbled in the first quarter, and its China sales are likely to be hampered by US export control measures.

ASML’s earnings are “a little bit of a warning shot across the bow ahead of some of the megatech stocks which are reporting next week,” said Tony Sycamore, a market analyst at IG Australia in Sydney. “There could be a little bit of nerves creeping into semiconductor stocks.”

Metal stocks advanced in South Korea and Australia after President Joe Biden called for higher tariffs on imports of Chinese steel and aluminum.

Elsewhere, Micron Technology Inc., the largest US maker of computer-memory chips, is poised to get more than $6 billion in grants from the Commerce Department to help pay for domestic factory projects, according to people familiar with the matter. It’s part of an effort to bring semiconductor production back to American soil.

Just a day after Jerome Powell threw cold water on rate-cut bets, dip buyers emerged in the Treasury market on Wednesday, with two-year yields dropping further below 5% and a $13 billion sale of 20-year bonds drawing solid demand.

“The US central bank remains on track to cut rates twice this year, most likely starting at its September meeting,” said Solita Marcelli, chief investment officer for the Americas at UBS Group AG’s wealth management unit.

“This means the return outlook for quality bonds remains positive and attractive, and that recent losses in fixed income are likely to be temporary,” she added.

In Asia, data set for release includes machine tool orders in Japan and Hong Kong unemployment. Markets are closed in Vietnam.

The unemployment rate in Australia rose, reflecting restrictive policy settings.

Elsewhere, oil held most of Wednesday’s 3% decline, weighed by weaker Chinese industrial data and a swelling in US crude inventories, while gold edged higher.

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Posted on: 2024-04-18T09:54:08+05:00