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Asian stocks fell on mounting recession fears

17 Jun , 2022   By : Kanchan Joshi

Asian stocks fell on mounting recession fears

Stocks face more losses Friday on deepening fears of an economic downturn as monetary policy tightens to fight damaging inflation.

Futures signaled losses for Japan, Australia and Hong Kong. US contracts stabilized after the S&P 500 closed at its lowest since December 2020. Technology stocks were hit particularly hard, taking 4% off the Nasdaq 100.

Treasuries climbed in the Wall Street session, supported by some soft US data including housing starts and building permits, taking the 10-year yield to about 3.20%. The dollar edged up from its biggest two-day drop since March 2020.

Markets are rounding off a week buffeted by notable interest-rate increases, including the Federal Reserve’s biggest move since 1994. The Swiss National Bank unexpectedly hiked rates by 50 basis points Thursday, triggering a surge in the franc. The Bank of England also lifted borrowing costs.

Japan, in contrast, is expected to stick with monetary easing. But doubts are growing about the sustainability of its approach amid pronounced yen weakness, stirring speculation of a potential policy surprise. The currency retreated before Friday’s decision.

There is “a building expectation that the Bank of Japan will need to amend their policy stance closer to some version of normal" even as the central bank says low rates are still needed, Benjamin Jeffery and Ian Lyngen, strategists at BMO Capital Markets, wrote in a note.

Global stocks are headed for their worst week since the pandemic roiled markets back in 2020, one of a range of assets under pressure as rate hikes suck liquidity from global markets. Spreads on US junk-rated corporate bonds -- a gauge of risk that hints at economic worries -- surpassed 500 basis points for the first time since November 2020.

Investors are back focused on “all of the half-empty things and how much narrower" the Fed’s path is “in trying to stick a soft landing," Carol Schleif, deputy chief investment officer at BMO Family Office, said on Bloomberg TV.

Bitcoin fell toward the $20,000 level. Oil wavered as traders weighed the prospect of slower economic growth against tight supplies. Gold pared a rally.

Key events this week:

Bank of Japan policy decision, Friday.

Eurozone CPI, Friday.

US Conference Board leading index, industrial production, Friday

What are the next levels for the pound? UK is the theme of this week’s MLIV Pulse survey. Click here to participate anonymously.

Some of the main moves in markets:


• S&P 500 futures rose 0.1% as of 8:36 a.m. in Tokyo. The S&P 500 fell 3.3%

• Nasdaq 100 futures increased 0.2%. The Nasdaq 100 fell 4%

• Nikkei 225 futures fell 2.4%

• S&P/ASX 200 futures dropped 2.1%

• Hang Seng futures declined 1%


• The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index rose 0.1%

• The euro was at $1.0549

• The Japanese yen was at 132.63 per dollar, down 0.3%

• The offshore yuan was at 6.6895 per dollar, down 0.1%


• The yield on 10-year Treasuries declined nine basis points to 3.20%

• Australia’s 10-year bond yield rose 10 basis points to 4.1%


• West Texas Intermediate crude was at $116.85 a barrel, down 0.6%

• Gold was at $1,850.26 an ounce, down 0.4%.

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