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Markets start week quietly ahead of key earnings reports

Olusegun Enujowo


Wall Street traded mixed in pre-market trading today- Monday, with the USD continuing to lose ground against its peers. We saw a slow start to the week, but this should accelerate significantly on Tuesday as investors look ahead to key earnings reports from some of the world's largest companies.

Markets in China and Europe continue to rise as more investors believe the outlook in Asia and Europe is attractive given the heavy losses in 2022 and the fact that Europe can likely avoid a recession in 2023. Recession expectations for Europe, mainly triggered by the energy crisis, seem increasingly exaggerated. Wall Street also recovered at the beginning of the year, but gains remain under pressure after strong gains - especially in the tech sector.

Last week(Friday), US stocks pushed again higher reversing last week's losses supported by dovish comments from Fed officials, especially from FOMC member Governor Christopher Waller, who said on Friday policy looked pretty close to sufficiently restrictive. I expect other Fed officials to push back on dovish hopes this week but the main focus will be on earnings reports. Around 88 companies out of S&P 500 companies will report December quarter profits this week as earnings season kicks-in to full gear.

The euro remains in demand, supported by hawkish comments from ECB members. ECB policymakers Klaas Knot and Peter Kazimir advocated raising interest rates by 50 basis points at each of the next two meetings.

The market continues to unwind the USD, favoring the EUR and AUD in particular. The JPY lost it's steam as the Bank of Japan has pushed back expectations that the central bank may shift policy away from ultra-loose monetary policy.

Overall positive market sentiment remains today, but tech stocks may come under pressure after Friday's very strong gains. The announcement of large job cuts at tech companies provided a tailwind, but may be an indicator of a cautious forwards guidance from these companies.

Commodities- especially Gold- remain in demand as China's measures to reopen markets are expected to further boost demand for energy such as oil and other commodities.

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