Global stocks under pressure

26 April, 2018

Global equity markets were under pressure on Wednesday as rising U.S Treasury bond yields and speculation of higher U.S interest rates dented appetite for stocks.

Most Asian shares fell during early trade following a heavy selloff on Wall Street overnight. The negative momentum from Asian markets and growing caution has already punished European stocks this morning. With investors likely to maintain some distance from equities as U.S bond yields climb, Wall Street could extend losses this afternoon.

Sterling depressed below 1.4000

Sterling struggled to push back above the 1.4000 pivotal level this morning as investors continued to question the likelihood of a BOE interest rate hike in May.

An aggressively appreciating Dollar has punished the GBPUSD further with prices trading around 1.3957 as of writing. Easing UK inflation and a cautious Mark Carney have forced investors to scale back expectations of a May rate hike. The Pound which is extremely sensitive to monetary policy speculation could depreciate further based on these factors.

Taking a look at the technical picture, the GBPUSD is bearish on the daily charts. The decisive break down below the pivotal 1.4000 support level could encourage a decline towards 1.3920 and 1.3800, respectively. For bulls to jump back into the game, prices need to secure a daily close back above 1.4000.

Currency spotlight – USDJPY

The Yen slipped to a fresh two month low at 109.25 during Wednesday’s trading session as higher U.S yields boosted the Dollar.

With the Dollar finding amble support from rising bond yields and expectations of higher U.S interest rates, the USDJPY has scope to venture higher. From a technical standpoint, the USDJPY is bullish on the daily timeframe as there have been consistently higher highs and higher lows. A daily close above 109.00 could encourage an incline higher towards 109.70. Alternatively, if bulls fail to maintain control above 109.00, the next levels of interest will be at 108.40 and 107.80, respectively.

Commodity spotlight – Gold

Gold has edged lower with prices sinking towards $1324 despite global equity markets suffering heavy losses.

An aggressively appreciating Dollar, expectations over higher U.S interest rates and easing geopolitical tensions are the most likely culprits for the yellow metal’s depreciation. With the Dollar expected to remain supported by rising bond yields and Fed hike speculation, zero-yielding Gold could feel the heat. If U.S GDP data dishes out an upside surprise on Friday, bears may be injected with enough inspiration to send prices towards $1300. All in all, it must be kept in mind that Gold still remains in a wide $60 range with support at $1300 and resistance at $1360. Prices are likely to remain confined within these regions until a fresh catalyst is brought into the picture.

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