27 setembre 2023
Yesterday’s session saw global equity markets mostly lower and government bond yields rising as investors continued to digest the “higher for longer” interest rate narrative and some weaker than expected US economic data releases.
Evolution of the international financial markets and evaluation of the main events and economic indicators of the previous day session. Available in English.
In the first session of the week, central banks remained the focus of investors’ attention, as they continue to digest the high-for-longer rhetoric. Yesterday, the hawkish tone of some FOMC members’ comments pushed US 10-year Treasury yields higher, fluctuating above 4.5%, a level not seen since late 2007.
Financial markets ended the week giving mixed signals from both sides of the Atlantic. In Europe, flash PMI data for September showed a slight improvement in business activity, albeit still signalling economic contraction amid a weak German manufacturing sector, pushing up government bond yields and dragging most equity indices lower.
During yesterday’s session investors largely digested the Fed’s hawkish pause on Wednesday, positioning further into the narrative of a soft landing for the US economy and higher interest rates for longer. Thus European and US government bond yields rose in the medium and long term, and either fell or remained unchanged in the short term.
The Fed delivered a hawkish pause yesterday, leaving interest rates unchanged but acknowledging a strong US economy. The dot-plot projects a tighter policy through 2024 and 2025, consistent with rates higher for longer. US stock indices fell and US Treasury yields rose on the news, with the yield curve flattening, while the USD appreciated.
Today’s FOMC meeting remained the focus of investor attention in yesterday’s session, with markets currently pricing in the Fed to keep rates unchanged. On the data front, US new home construction fell to its lowest level since 2020 as higher mortgage rates in August appear to have cooled demand.
Investors began the week focused on Wednesday’s FOMC meeting and weighing the impact of the steady rise in crude oil prices, with the Brent benchmark rising a further 0.7% during the session. In this context, European sovereign bond yields rose across the board, as did US short-term benchmarks.
Financial markets ended the week digesting Thursday’s ECB rate decision. If investors initially interpreted Lagarde’s speech as implying a slightly dovish bias going forward, several ECB officials pushed back against such interpretations on Friday, pushing European sovereign bond yields up, peripheral spreads to widen, and a steepening of the curve.
In yesterday's session, investors' attention focused on the ECB monetary policy meeting, where interest rates were hiked by 25bp to 4.0% (depo) and 4.5% (refi). More importantly, the ECB said that these levels, if maintained for a sufficiently long period, might not need to be raised further to return inflation back to 2%.
In yesterday's session, the US CPI report of August centered the stage in financial markets. Headline inflation surged from 0.2% m/m to 0.6% due to an increase in gasoline prices- (3.7% y/y) while core inflation ticked modestly up from 0.2% m/m to 0.3% (4.3% y/y).
Investors traded yesterday with most eyes on today’s US CPI report. Oil prices rose again after OPEC released its monthly report and kept its global oil demand forecast for the rest of the year and 2024 unchanged, despite Saudi and Russian cuts. Benchmark Brent ended the session at an annual high, fuelling concerns about inflation.
In yesterday’s session, investors traded cautiously as they awaited key economic data later this week (US CPI inflation) and the ECB monetary policy decision on Thursday. The main economic event yesterday was the downward revision of the European Commission’s summer GDP forecasts.
Investors ended the week on a cautious note: trading volumes were light and most asset prices were little changed. Sovereign bond yields were largely unchanged in the eurozone, while rising slightly in the US despite most Fed officials who spoke in recent weeks tended to lean towards a pause in the hiking cycle at the September meeting.