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Asia markets mostly fall as U.S. jobs report show room for more hikes; Adani saga continues


Australia retail sales fell 0.2% in final quarter of 2022

Australia’s retail trade volume fell by 0.2% in the final quarter of 2022 compared to the previous quarter, according to seasonally adjusted data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The decline is less than the 0.6% drop expected by economists in a Reuters poll.

Retail trade volumes fell by 3.9% on a monthly basis, and rose 7.5% compared to the same period a year ago.

— Jihye Lee

Week Ahead: Reserve Bank of Australia; Japan current account and China inflation

Here are some major economic data investors will be watching out of the Asia-Pacific this week.

Australia’s retail trade readings for the final quarter of 2022 will be released later today. Thailand’s inflation data and Indonesia’s gross domestic product will also be published.

On Tuesday, the Reserve Bank of Australia announces its benchmark cash rate decision. Economists polled by Reuters are expecting the central bank to hike by 25 basis points in February.

Japan’s current account balance for December will be released on Wednesday.

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On Thursday, Taiwan will release its inflation print for January.

China’s consumer price index and producer price index for January will be published on Friday.

— Jihye Lee

Adani stocks lost more than 30% in the past two weeks

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But is the worst of the tech slump over? Market pros weigh in and reveal their top picks to play the sector.

Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Zavier Ong

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Stocks close lower Friday

Stocks closed lower Friday, but ended a winning week.

The S&P 500 declined 1.04% to 4,136.48. The Nasdaq Composite shed roughly 1.59% to 12,006.95. Meanwhile, the Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 127.93 points, or 0.38%, to 33,926.01.

— Sarah Min

January jobs report blows past expectations

Strong jobs report pressures Fed to follow through with interest rate hikes

The Federal Reserve is even more likely to raise interest rates to its forecast 5.25% for the top end of its fed funds target rate range, after January’s employment report showed a boom in new jobs.

There were 517,000 jobs added in January, well above the Dow Jones consensus of 187,000.

“For the Fed, it means they’ve got to be worried about a reacceleration in inflation. Even though wages are decelerating in this measure, aggregate demand is too strong. These are paychecks. Some of them multiple,” said Diane Swonk, KPMG chief economist. “We still have a lot more data before we get to March. For now, it’s a quarter point [hike]. They are not going to move off 5.25%. I can tell you that right now.”

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In the futures market, traders were betting on an end rate, or terminal rate near 5%. According to rate strategist Ben Jeffery at BMO, the fed funds futures showed a high 4.97% by June, up from 4.89% Thursday.

The market is pricing in a 25 basis point hike for March. A basis point equals 0.01 of a percentage point.

But Jeffery said the futures market is now pricing in more of a chance for a quarter point hike in May as well. “There was always a solid probability for 25 basis points in May to be the last hike, and this has increased the probability of that,” he said.

Patti Domm


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James Thomas
James Thomas
Hello, I am James Thomas blogger and content creator who specializes in personal finance and investing at Business Advise. I have been writing for over 5 years and have built a large following of readers who value practical advice and actionable tips. I'm committed to helping people take control of their financial futures and achieve their goals.

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