Global Markets News Round-up: 20/02/23

US-China tensions continue to escalate as Secretary of State Antony Blinken and China’s State Councilor Wang Yi engaged in a heated conversation in their first meeting since a Chinese balloon entered the US, opening a new rift. The two diplomats discussed a range of issues, including Taiwan, North Korea, and Russia, with Blinken accusing China of considering giving weapons to Russia for the war in Ukraine. 

Meanwhile, Iran’s uranium enrichment activities continue to pose a risk of prompting a new crisis, with international atomic monitors detecting uranium enriched to levels just below that needed for a nuclear weapon. 

Meta Platforms is launching a subscription service called Meta Verified, primarily targeted towards content creators.

European stocks are expected to see gains as investors assess the trajectory of interest rates and geopolitical developments. The S&P 500 index is facing successive weekly losses as the rates market signals negativity, with equities struggling in the face of high inflation and hawkish Fed-speak.

EU diplomats are discussing pooling €4 billion for ammunition purchases for Kyiv, while UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak has urged NATO to finalize a security guarantee for Ukraine by July. 

The White House is planning new sanctions against Russia’s defense, energy and finance sectors. 

Aluminium prices have risen due to reports of capacity cuts at smelters in Yunnan province. 

The UK’s National Health Service is experiencing continued strikes from ambulance workers, junior doctors, and nurses, who are demanding higher pay. 

Meanwhile, property prices are surging across north London, with homes in Camden seeing a 17.2% year-on-year increase in asking prices. 

Finally, Manchester United has drawn a competing bid from British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, and Iranian officials deny reports that they have enriched uranium beyond 60%.

Markets on Friday:

Asian stocks and European equity futures rose on Monday, as investors weighed hawkish comments from Federal Reserve officials and geopolitical tensions. 

A report from Goldman Sachs predicting a rebound in Chinese stocks also boosted sentiment. 

The dollar’s strength, seen recently, is expected to decline in late first quarter or second quarter as inflationary pressures recede and investors gain more visibility on China’s recovery, according to Paul Mackel, global head of FX research at HSBC Holdings. 

Meanwhile, investors will be watching for more commentary on American consumers as retail earnings reports are released this week, and further signs of a resilient economy could provide more reasons for the Fed to hold rates higher for longer.

Oils gained with hopes on increased Chinese demand while gold remained little changed.

Global indices at 7:00am UKT:

Dow Jones: 33,826.69 (+0.39%)

NASDAQ: 11,787.27 (-0.28%)

FTSE100: 8,004.36 (-0.10%)

CAC40: 7,347.72 (-0.25%)

Sensex: 60,940.87 (-0.10%)

Nifty50: 17,919.55 (-0.14%)

Nikkei225: 27,531.94 (+0.07%)

Disclaimer: The information provided in this summary is based on sources believed to be reliable and accurate. However, the accuracy and completeness of the information cannot be guaranteed. The opinions and views expressed in this summary are for informational purposes only and do not constitute investment advice. This summary should not be relied upon as the sole source of information when making investment decisions. Any decisions made based on information contained in this summary are the sole responsibility of the reader and may not be in the reader's best interest. The author and publisher assume no liability for any errors or omissions in this summary.
MSc Finance graduate from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)
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Ria V Vaghela is an M&A Executive at RSM UK and an MSc Finance graduate from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). She has worked at Jefferies, Dial Partners and 7i Capital prior to RSM UK gaining an experience of about 1.5 years. She has also worked as an Editor and Content Writer for The Representative Media. Apart from finance, she is interested in reading books on psychology and economics and also likes to paint and play lawn tennis

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