In Asian Equity Markets Japanese stocks eased on Thursday, with cyclicals and oil companies leading losses, after Wall Street’s rally took a breather on worries about inflation. The Nikkei share average lost 0.69 percent to 29,484.82 while the broader Topix shed 0.44 percent to 2,029.37. The Hang Seng index lost 1.4 percent, to 25,305.07 points, while the Hong Kong China Enterprises index lost 1.8 percent, to 9,032.22. The CSI300 index fell 0.6 percent, to 4,854.43 points at the end of the morning session, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.1 percent, to 3,532.81 points.
In Currency Markets the dollar hovered below a 16-month peak in Asian trade on Thursday, losing ground on the New Zealand dollar, after having fallen against the pound and yen overnight as traders assessed whether the U.S. currency’s recent surge was starting to stall. The New Zealand dollar rose 0.38 percent to $0.7023 after a central bank survey showed near-term inflation is expected to rise in the fourth quarter. Against the Japanese currency, the dollar inched down to as low as 113.86 yen, while the euro was at $1.1327. The British currency was last at $1.3502, up slightly on the day.
In US Equity Markets stocks ended Wednesday lower on inflation fears and supply chain concerns stemming from retailers’ earnings, with investors betting the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates sooner than expected to tame rising prices. The Dow fell 0.58 percent, to 35,931.05, the S&P 500 lost 0.26 percent, to 4,688.67 and the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.33 percent, to 15,921.57. Chipmaker Nvidia Corp lost 3.1 percent ahead of its earnings reported after the bell on Wednesday. The wider Philadelphia semiconductor index ended 0.7 percent lower after a record finish the previous day.
In Commodities Markets oil prices fell on Wednesday after the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and the International Energy Agency warned of impending oversupply and that rising COVID-19 cases in Europe increased the downside risks to demand recovery. Brent crude fell $2.15 to settle at $80.28 a barrel. U.S. crude settled down $2.40 at $78.36 a barrel. Spot gold rose 0.9 percent to $1,865.66 per ounce. Elsewhere, spot silver rose 1.1 percent to $25.06 per ounce, platinum fell 0.1 percent to $1,060.40, and palladium climbed 1.2 percent to $2,184.51.
In European Equity Markets stocks closed at a record high on Wednesday, rising for the sixth straight session, as positive earnings reports helped overshadow worries that soaring gas prices were feeding into inflationary pressures. The pan-European STOXX 600 rose 0.2 percent after better-than-expected U.S. retail sales data lifted Wall Street equities on Tuesday. German medical tech firm Siemens Healthineers gained 5.6 percent after raising synergy targets from its Varian acquisition earlier this year. Travel and leisure stocks fell 1.7 percent, dragged down by Swedish online gaming company Evolution.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasuries rallied on Wednesday as the recent backup in yields reached levels that drew buyers back to the securities, and after the Treasury sold 20-year bonds to tepid but not terrible demand. Benchmark 10-year yields reached 1.65 percent, the highest since Oct. 26, before reversing and falling back to 1.61 percent. Twenty-year bond yields remained above those offered on 30-year bonds, where they have traded since Oct. 28. The 20-year bond yields were last at 2.05 percent while 30-year yields were at 2.00 percent.