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Global Markets and Dollar Brace for Fed Decision Amid Inflation Concerns

Global Markets and Dollar Brace for Fed Decision Amid Inflation Concerns

People walk on an overpass past office towers in the Lujiazui financial district of Shanghai, China October 17, 2022. REUTERS

(Ovichnews USA) - Global stocks surged today, fueled by optimism in the technology sector, while the dollar maintained strength in anticipation of a crucial U.S. inflation report and Federal Reserve policy decision that could shape the near-term trajectory of interest rates.

As market participants eagerly awaited key economic indicators, European markets rebounded from earlier losses driven by political uncertainties in France, following President Emmanuel Macron's call for a snap election after a setback in EU polls. Apple's remarkable 7% jump to a record high on Wall Street, propelled by the unveiling of new AI features targeting iPhone demand, buoyed the Nasdaq Composite by 0.9% and propelled the S&P 500 to new closing highs. Attention now turns to the U.S. consumer price index (CPI) data for May, with analysts predicting a modest 0.1% increase from the previous month, while the core CPI is forecasted to rise by 0.3%. Chris Weston, Head of Research at Pepperstone, noted the market's heightened risk management approach, with the focus on the U.S. core CPI as a pivotal guide. A reading around 0.2% in the core CPI could alleviate pressure in risk markets and weaken the dollar, while a figure near 0.4% might prompt an increase in U.S. two-year yields and strengthen the dollar. The MSCI All-World index rose by 0.14%, with European markets, represented by the STOXX 600, bouncing back by 0.6% for the first time in four days. U.S. stock futures indicated a modestly stronger opening on Wall Street later, climbing by 0.1%. Meanwhile, Chinese blue chips remained mostly stable as lackluster price data failed to significantly boost market sentiment. In currency markets, the dollar index maintained its post-payrolls gains, standing firm at 105.26 against major peers, while the euro saw a marginal uptick to $1.0752 after three consecutive days of decline. Concerns about the upcoming French election weighed on the euro's performance, causing unease among investors and leading to downgrades by three ratings agencies due to political uncertainty. Despite lackluster data showing the UK economy stagnated in April, sterling exhibited resilience, strengthening by 0.14% against the dollar. Oil prices continued their upward trajectory for a third consecutive session, with Brent futures climbing by 0.7% to $82.53 a barrel, and U.S. crude futures advancing by 0.9% to $78.62 a barrel. Additionally, gold prices saw a marginal decline to $2,314 per ounce. While the Federal Reserve is not expected to adjust interest rates at its policy meeting, market focus will be on the potential inclusion of three rate cuts in the Fed's projections for the year. Futures signal anticipation of 39 basis points of Fed easing for the year, as treasuries steadied following a strong 10-year Treasury auction. The 10-year yield remained at 4.402% after a 7-basis-point decline in the preceding session, illustrating the cautious sentiment ahead of key macroeconomic developments.

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