The Bank of Japan kept its monetary policy settings unchanged
Wall Street stocks finished mostly lower overnight, as investors continued to digest the latest message from the U.S. Federal Reserve on raising interest rates earlier than expected. The S&P 500 shed less than 0.1%, offsetting losses due to a rise in Apple and Microsoft. The Dow Jones shed 0.62% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained nearly 0.90%.
Today in Asia, equities were mixed-to-lower, with investors still jittery after the Federal Reserve’s unexpected shift in tone earlier this week. Elsewhere, the Bank of Japan kept its monetary policy settings unchanged, and, as widely expected, extended a deadline for its pandemic-relief programme beyond September by six months. Japan’s benchmark shed 0.19% following the outcome if the meeting. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng jumped 0.85%, while the Shanghai Composite in China slipped just 0.1%.
European stocks opened marginally higher on Friday before sliding in recent trading, with the Stoxx Europe 600 index shedding 0.15% while U.S. equity futures traded mostly flat. On the data front, the UK retail sales came in at -1.4% over the month in May versus 1.6% expected and 9.2% previous. The core retail sales stood at -2.1% versus 1.5% expected and 9.1% previous.
Meanwhile, the USD index continued to push higher, advancing to fresh two-month highs around 92.00 as the Fed signaled intentions to hike rates at some point in late 2023. Against this backdrop, EURUSD slipped to fresh mid-April lows around 1.1885 before bouncing back above the 1.1900 handle in recent trading.
Elsewhere, gold prices bounced on Friday following five consecutive days of losses. The bullion plunged to early-May lows around $1,867 yesterday before recovering to the 100-DMA in the $1,794 in recent trading. A decisive break above this moving average would pave the way towards the $1,900 psychological figure.