November 21, 2018
After yesterday’s historic rout in the market, there were signs of stabilization in overnight trading with most markets trading higher, with the key catalyst a report from MNI that the Fed may end its rate hikes as soon as this coming spring.
US stocks were set to open sharply firmer after two days of losses that wiped out the S&P500’s gains for the year and left the tech-heavy Nasdaq index teetering on the brink of falling into the red. Losses were concentrated in the technology sector, as investors dumped their holdings of FAANG shares and pushed the Nasdaq index to seven-month lows and energy shares too had dropped in line with a 6 percent oil price slump S&P 500.
“High-flying momentum stocks have come off in a fairly spectacular fashion. At one point Apple and Amazon accounted for 40 percent of U.S. equity gains and people were just recycling money into the winners,” said David Vickers, senior portfolio manager at Russell Investments. “That’s come off the boil and set the cat among the pigeons… We’ve seen a lot of reflexivity, when selling begets selling, the market starts to turn over, people take profits, it leads to another leg down and so on.”
That fed through to Asia on Wednesday, taking MSCI’s index of ex-Japan Asia-Pacific shares almost half a percent lower, but it clawed most of the losses to trade flat, with MSCI’s all-country benchmark was flat too, attempting to snap two days of falls.
Chinese stocks closed in the green and near session highs, rebounding from Tuesday’s drop as Asia closed mixed, but it was Europe that showed the most promise with the Stoxx600 solidly in the green, led by Italy where BTPs rallied from the open, after a report that Deputy PM Salvini may be open to budget revisions; Salvini then denied the report, clarifying that he’s only open to tweaks and won’t compromise on the main issues.
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