Risk Appetite on the US Stock Market Wanes Amid Inflation Concerns |

On Wednesday, appetite for risk in US equities decreased, with major stock indices finishing the session slightly in the red. The American market successfully passed the bearish baton to Asian and European markets as investors gradually sold off stocks amidst rising oil prices. US Treasury bond yields increased as traders apparently factor in the risks of a potential inflation resurgence due to anticipated cost-push inflation impulse, particularly due to rising fuel prices. Yields for two-year bonds crossed the 5% mark, while ten-year bonds reached 4.25%. The spread between long-term and short-term bonds changed recent direction and moved lower. This may indicate a resurgence of speculation in the market regarding a Federal Reserve interest rate hike.

A significant event from yesterday was the ISM report on US service sector activity. It provided another mixed signal: the overall index rose from 52.7 to 54.5 points, beating expectations of 52.5 points. The ISM Prices sub-index left the market bewildered, as instead of the expected decrease, it actually increased from 56.8 to 58.9 points. This suggests that, according to respondents, price pressures may have increased at increasing rate compared to the previous month. This contradicts recent CPI and PCE inflation and wage data from the NFP report. It’s worth noting that the Federal Reserve’s number one goal is to reduce inflation in the service sector since its price pressures largely shape the overall trend of consumer inflation in the US. Additionally, the labor-intensive nature of the industry (high labor-to-capital ratio in its output) creates a positive feedback loop of “prices-wage-prices” which largely explains inflation persistence.

Short-term bond yields increased following the report’s publication, underscoring the market’s surprise at the unexpected new information:

Consequently, the likelihood of a Fed rate hike in November has also increased. If a week ago it stood at 37.1%, it now sits at 43.5%:

The US dollar index halted its recent downward correction and rose to the 105 level on Thursday. EURUSD continues to consolidate around the 1.07 level, with minimal attempts to stage a rebound:

This behavior near the round figure increases the likelihood of a bearish breakthrough on new information towards the 1.06 area. However, the ECB is due to hold a meeting next week, and based on the rhetoric of ECB officials, the regulator is set to hike interest rate further. The potential for hawkish surprises likely rules out a significant decline and even if a downward market breakout occurs, it will likely be short-lived.

منبع: https://www.tickmill.com/blog/risk-appetite-on-the-us-stock-market-wanes-amid-inflation-concerns

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