In Asian Equity Markets stocks fell on Wednesday as weak Chinese economic data reinforced worries about slowing growth globally as well as in the world’s second-biggest economy amid fraught nerves over a still-dominant pandemic and tapering of central banks’ stimulus. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.82 percent, extending earlier losses after the release of the Chinese data, while Tokyo’s Nikkei shed 0.89 percent, moving off a more than 31-year closing-high the day before. Chinese blue chips were down 0.73 percent, while the Hong Kong benchmark shed 0.87 percent.
In Currency Markets the dollar drifted within recent ranges against major peers on Wednesday after softer-than-expected U.S. inflation raised doubts about a taper of Federal Reserve stimulus this year. The dollar index stood at 92.632. One euro bought $1.1808 on Wednesday, mostly flat from the previous session. The dollar fell slightly to 109.595 yen. The U.S. currency edged higher against its antipodean rivals though, adding 0.1 percent to $0.7316 per Aussie and rising about the same margin to $0.7088 to New Zealand’s kiwi.
In US Equity Markets stocks fell on Tuesday as economic uncertainties and the increasing likelihood of a corporate tax rate hike dampened investor sentiment and prompted a broad sell-off despite signs of easing inflation. The Dow fell 0.84 percent, to 34,577.57; the S&P 500 lost 0.57 percent, at 4,443.05; and the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.45 percent, to 15,037.76. Apple Inc unveiled its iPhone 13 and added new features to its iPad and Apple Watch gadgets in its biggest product launch event of the year as the company faces increased scrutiny in the courts over its business practices. Its shares closed down 1.0 percent.
In Commodities Markets oil prices rose on Tuesday, extending gains as Nicholas weakened into a tropical storm and the International Energy Agency said demand would rebound in the remainder of the year. Brent crude settled up 0.12 percent, at $73.60 a barrel. U.S. crude settled up 0.01 percent, at $70.46 per barrel. Spot gold rose 0.6 percent to $1,803.69 per ounce. Among other metals, palladium fell 5.4 percent to $1,973.47 per ounce, its lowest since July 2020, and platinum fell 2.1 percent, to $941.06 per ounce. Silver rose 0.5 percent to $23.84 per ounce.
In European Equity Markets stocks ended flat on Tuesday, with miners, banks and luxury stocks leading declines as optimism over cooling U.S. inflation growth in August proved to be short-lived. The region wide STOXX 600 index inched 0.01 percent lower, with the basic resources sector index falling 1.9 percent and banks sliding 1.1 percent. Luxury stocks, including LVMH, Kering, Richemont and Burberry, fell between 1.9 percent and 3 percent, tracking moves in Asia on concerns about the spread of COVID-19 cases in China. France’s CAC 40 fell 0.4 percent, while the UK’s miner-heavy FTSE 100 shed 0.5 percent.
In Bond Markets U.S. government bond yields fell on Tuesday after data showed consumer prices increased at their slowest pace in six months in August, suggesting that inflation had probably peaked and removing urgency from the next move by the Fed. The yield on the benchmark 10-year note fell more than 6 basis points on the day to a low of 1.263 percent, the lowest reading since Aug. 24. The 30-year Treasury bond yield was down 5.4 basis points to 1.850 percent. The two-year U.S. Treasury yield was down 0.6 basis points at 0.209 percent.