Germany is leading the biggest rally in global bond markets since March’s banking rout as cooling inflation and a weakening economy suggest European Central Bank rate hikes are nearing an end. Borrowing costs, or bond yields, in the benchmark euro area issuer are down at least 20 basis points (bps) this week. Alongside British and U.S. peers, yields – which move inversely to bond prices – were set for their biggest weekly declines since mid-March…
Europe Seen Higher Ahead of Fed Meeting
European stock markets are set to open higher Wednesday, rebounding after Tuesday’s sharp losses, but trading ranges are likely to be tight ahead of the conclusion of the latest policy meeting of the Federal Reserve.
At 2:00 AM ET (0600 GMT), the DAX futures contract in Germany traded 0.9% higher. France’s CAC 40 futures were up 0.7%, while the FTSE 100 futures contract in the U.K. rose 0.3%.
Although the major European indices saw losses of between 1.5% and 2% on Tuesday, the tone of late has been positive. The DAX has gained over 16% over the last month, the CAC 40 over 13% and the FTSE 100 around 6%.
In the U.S. the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index has posted an all-time high and the broader-based S&P 500 briefly traded in positive territory for the year as a whole.
This has been based on optimism over a global recovery from the coronavirus crisis, as well as coordinated monetary and fiscal stimulus from central banks and governments.
With this in mind, investors will be keeping a keen eye on the Federal Reserve as the U.S. central bank concludes its policy meeting later in the day.
While no major policy announcements are expected, investors will scrutinize its remarks on the health of the economy, the world’s largest, particularly after the recent upturn in jobs numbers.
The project is aimed at shielding commercial banks from staggering amounts of debt that is considered unlikely to be repaid, particularly if rising unemployment chokes off the income needed to do so.
Oil prices sold off Wednesday, weighed by the American Petroleum Institute’s surprise estimate of an 8.4-million-barrel build for the week ended June 5 late Tuesday, prompting renewed fears of a supply glut.
Investors will now look closely at the Energy Information Administration’s prediction, due later in the day.
At 2:00 AM ET, U.S. crude futures traded 1.5% lower at $38.37 a barrel. The international benchmark Brent contract fell 1% to $40.76.
Elsewhere, gold futures rose 0.2% to $1,725.25/oz, while EUR/USD traded at 1.1364, up 0.2%.