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Markets Remain Nervous Ahead of Key Earnings Week!

Olusegun Enujowo


As investors brace for a week filled with corporate earnings announcements from major companies and crucial economic data, global equity markets struggle to gain momentum. Asian markets closed lower, with mixed results in Europe, while Wall Street continues last week's downtrend in today's US pre-market trading.

Coca-Cola kicks off the week with a robust quarterly report, sending its shares up by nearly 1.8%. Numerous key companies are slated to release their earnings this week, including Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Meta, Visa, Mastercard, Boeing, Intel, and oil & gas behemoths Exxon and Chevron on Friday.

US Treasury yields trade modestly lower, putting slight pressure on the USD, which has stabilized after weeks of decline. Money markets continue to anticipate a rate hike in May but then Fed rates to peak before a series of cuts later this year. It remains an optimistic view, especially after recent inflation data painted a picture of stubborn inflation. The so-called core PCE deflator, the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge will be much in focus this week.

Fears of a decelerating economy continue to mount, evidenced by bearish commodity prices. Last week, oil and industrial metals, including iron ore, experienced significant losses. These declines will persistently impact commodity-linked currencies such as the AUD. Meanwhile, gold remains below $2,000/oz but benefits from decreasing bond yields and increasing recession concerns.

The spotlight this week will be on earnings reports. Any indications of a slowdown, shrinking margins, or warnings may cause selling in equities, following Wall Street's recent sideways movement. In contrast, European stocks have shown positive development - which, however, also comes to an end. We currently see the calm before the storm.

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