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Macro Roundup (Jan 5)
Jan 5, 2023 09:30CST
Source:SMM
The U.S. dollar held at lower levels on Wednesday after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s December meeting offered no surprises or new information about the size of its expected rate hike in February.

SHANGHAI, Jan 5 —This is a roundup of global macroeconomic news last night and what is expected today.

The U.S. dollar held at lower levels on Wednesday after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s December meeting offered no surprises or new information about the size of its expected rate hike in February.

The Fed hiked rates by 50 basis points last month and Fed officials agreed a slower pace of interest rate increases would allow them to continue increasing the cost of credit to control inflation in a gradual way meant to limit the risks to economic growth.

The minutes also put a premium on explaining that the decision to move to smaller rate increases should not be construed by investors or the public at large as a weakening of the central bank’s commitment to bringing inflation back to the 2% target.

The minutes also did little to change expectations for the Fed’s February meeting. Fed fund futures traders are pricing in a 67% likelihood that the U.S. central bank will continue to slow the pace of its rate hikes in February to 25 basis points. The 50 basis-point hike in December followed four consecutive 75 basis-point increases.

Stock futures are flat Wednesday night as investors looked beyond the hawkishness of the Federal Reserve’s meeting minutes released in the afternoon toward labor data coming later this week.

Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 36 points, trading down around 0.1%. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures both also traded down 0.1%.

The moves follow a choppy trading session. Markets had been down early in the day on the back of a mixed bag of economic data, but stock rose into the closing bell. The Dow ended the day up 133 points, or 0.4%, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq added 0.8% and 0.7%, respectively.

Stocks were mainly trading up in the afternoon. But gave up some of their gains following the release of minutes from the Fed’s December meeting, which showed the central bank remained committed to higher interest rates for “some time.”

Oil fell by more than $4 a barrel on Wednesday, with Brent suffering its biggest percentage loss in the first two trading days of the year since 1991, as demand concerns linked to the global economy and rising Covid-19 cases in China crushed crude prices.

Brent futures settled at $77.84 a barrel, falling $4.26, or 5.2%. U.S. crude settled at $72.84 a barrel, shedding $4.09, or 5.3%.

Brent fell by about 9.4%, its greatest two-day loss at the start of the year since January 1991, according to Refinitiv Eikon data.

Gold held near seven-month highs reached on Wednesday after the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s last meeting showed all its policymakers remained committed to fighting inflation, but agreed on the need to slow rate hikes in 2023.

Spot gold last rose 0.93% to $1,855.55 per ounce, having risen as much as 1.4% earlier to its highest price since June 13.

U.S. gold futures settled up 0.7% at $1,859.

European markets closed higher on Wednesday as inflation data out of France and Germany indicated that consumer price increases across the euro zone are slowing.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 closed up 1.4%, with retail stocks adding 3.3% to lead gains as most sectors and major bourses ended in positive territory. Oil and gas stocks, however, fell 3.1%.

Macro

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