(Bloomberg) — European stocks struggled for traction and bonds fell as traders weighed the outlook for monetary policy ahead of a raft of speeches by policy makers at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week.
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The Stoxx Europe 600 index rose 0.1% at the open. Grifols SA climbed more than 7% after the Spanish medical-technology company sought to dispel investors’ concerns over the completion of a 12.5 billion yuan ($1.7 billion) deal in China. Bond yields across the region rose, with Germany’s 10-year yield up about four basis points.
European Central Bank Chief Economist Philip Lane said in an interview published at the weekend that easing policy too early would be “self-defeating,” pouring some cold water on expectations of rapid rate cuts. Traders are still betting on 149 basis points of reductions this year, compared to 153 on Friday. ECB Governing Council member Robert Holtzmann may add to the picture when he speaks at Davos later today.
Futures on the Nasdaq 100 rose 0.2%, while S&P 500 contracts edged 0.1% higher. A gauge of the dollar was little changed. Treasury cash markers are closed for a US public holiday.
The MSCI Asia Pacific share index climbed for a third session after a surprise decline in US producer prices Friday reinforced bets the Fed will lower borrowing costs in coming months.
Japanese stocks rose after both the Topix and the Nikkei 225 indexes climbed to 34-year highs last week amid inflows from overseas investors. Stocks also advanced in Taiwan after the Democratic Progressive Party won the presidential election and the more China-friendly Kuomintang gained too few seats to control the assembly.
China’s CSI 300 Index fluctuated between gains and losses amid speculation officials may lower the required reserve ratio after the People’s Bank of China unexpectedly left the rate on its one-year policy loans at 2.5% Monday. That was contrary to expectations among economists that it would trim the so-called medium-term lending facility by 10 basis points.
“Rate cuts are likely still on the cards, but China looks to be taking a more measured approach to policy easing,” said Marvin Chen, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence in Hong Kong.
Along with more US earnings reports, investors this week will be focused on inflation readings in Germany and the UK, as well as a swath of political leaders and officials including Chinese Premier Li Qiang attending the annual World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland. A speech by Federal Reserve Governor Christopher Waller, after officials last week attempted to temper any expectation of a looming rate cut, will also be closely watched.
In commodities, oil was steady as the risk that airstrikes by the US and allies against the Houthis would ignite a wider conflict and disrupt crude flows from the Middle East was balanced by soft fundamentals.
Some key events in markets this week:
World Economic Forum in Davos begins, with this year’s theme “Rebuilding Trust,” Monday
Eurozone industrial production, Monday
Eurozone finance ministers meet in Brussels, Monday
Germany to release 2023 growth figures, including an estimate for the fourth quarter, Monday
Iowa Republican caucuses, the first nominating contests for the 2024 US presidential election, Monday
Japan PPI, Tuesday
Germany CPI, ZEW survey expectations, Tuesday
UK unemployment, Tuesday
US Empire Manufacturing, Tuesday
Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Morgan Stanley to report earnings, Tuesday
Federal Reserve Governor Christopher Waller speaks, Tuesday
China GDP, property prices, retail sales and industrial production, Wednesday
Eurozone CPI, Wednesday
UK CPI, Wednesday
US retail sales, industrial production, business inventories, Wednesday
Federal Reserve issues Beige Book survey, Wednesday
European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde speaks at Davos, Wednesday
New York Fed President John Williams speaks, Wednesday
Australia unemployment, Thursday
Japan industrial production, Thursday
European Central Bank publishes account of December policy meeting, Thursday
US housing starts, initial jobless claims, Thursday
Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic speaks, Thursday
Japan CPI, Friday
US existing home sales, University of Michigan consumer sentiment, Friday
US Congress faces deadline to pass spending agreement before part of federal government shuts down, Friday
San Francisco Fed President Mary Daly speaks, Friday
Here are some of the main moves in markets:
The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.1% as of 8:27 a.m. London time
S&P 500 futures were little changed
Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.3%
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were little changed
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.2%
The MSCI Emerging Markets Index was little changed
The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed
The euro rose 0.1% to $1.0963
The Japanese yen fell 0.4% to 145.42 per dollar
The offshore yuan was little changed at 7.1858 per dollar
The British pound was little changed at $1.2758
Bitcoin rose 0.3% to $42,647.38
Ether fell 0.6% to $2,510.45
The yield on 10-year Treasuries was little changed at 3.94%
Germany’s 10-year yield advanced three basis points to 2.22%
Britain’s 10-year yield advanced two basis points to 3.82%
Brent crude was little changed
Spot gold rose 0.4% to $2,056.47 an ounce
This story was produced with the assistance of Bloomberg Automation.
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