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All Eyes On US Inflation Data, Earnings In Focus

All Eyes On US Inflation Data, Earnings In Focus

American and European futures are lower today after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) cut its global growth forecasts yesterday. Furthermore, investors will be looking at today’s inflation data to see how rising consumer prices will affect corporations and individuals alike. The inflation readings are expected to be on the higher side.

In yesterday’s session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.34%, and the S&P 500 index fell 0.24%. The Nasdaq, the tech-savvy index, slumped 0.14%, and the Russell 2000, the small-cap index, rose 0.61%.

IMF Report

The IMF has mentioned that global economic growth has lost steam, despite the fact that we saw a strong global economic recovery from the rock bottom situation caused by the coronavirus pandemic earlier in 2021. The fund has reduced its global output forecast for 2021 from 6.0% to 5.9%. However, economies have been able to recover from the 3.1% contraction seen last year. According to the IMF’s most recent World Economic Outlook report, output will grow by 4.9% in 2022.

The reason for the drop in projections made earlier in July is that factors such as the delta variant, rising inflation, tight supply chains, and rising food and fuel costs are weighing on the economy. Manufacturing firms are finding it increasingly difficult to meet rising demand and forecast their costs in the coming months. Smaller economies are likely to be hit the hardest because they have limited access to vaccines, leaving them vulnerable to the highly contagious coronavirus. As a result, the opportunity costs of different policies have risen and become more complex. Similarly, the divergence of economic goals among countries is a source of concern and is impeding a collaborative movement for long-term global economic growth.

However, not everything is bad, as the IMF has supported the Federal Reserve’s view that inflation is likely to be temporary in its reports. According to the agency, inflation in developed economies is likely to settle at 2% by mid-2022 after peaking in the fourth quarter of 2021. Consumer prices in developing economies, on the other hand, are likely to rise by 5.5% in 2021 and 4.9% in 2022. Furthermore, the IMF warned investors that inflation and growth projections are skewed, with rising inflation being skewed upwards and growth being skewed downwards.

Earnings Season

Today, JPMorgan and Delta Air Lines are expected to kick off the earnings season. Both are expected to report earnings before the bell today. Despite exceeding expectations in its last four financial reports, JPMorgan’s stock price fell on the day of its earnings release. Last quarter, the company outperformed expectations, thanks to its ability to contain loan losses. Earnings at the bank are expected to rise by only 2% year on year. Similarly, Delta Air Lines’ earnings per share are expected to be positive after being negative for the last six quarters.

Economic Reports

Inflation is expected to be high in today’s report as economies face supply-side shocks and surging fuel prices, which push the cost of manufacturing products up. Consumer prices are expected to jump 5.3% on a year-over-year basis and 0.3% in September. On a year-over-year basis, core CPI is forecasted to be 4% on a year-to-year basis and 0.3% in September.

Investors should also keep in mind that the minutes from the September Federal Open Market Committee meeting are due to be released today. Stock traders will carefully examine the report for clues about how and when the Federal Reserve will likely begin winding down its quantitative easing programme, which has supported markets since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Cryptocurrencies

Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, has launched a $1 billion growth fund to support and fast-track innovations in the blockchain technology and digital asset adoption. The money will go toward the Binance Smart Chain blockchain project. Fifty percent of the money will go toward blockchain-based financial services, gaming, and virtual reality. The remainder will be used to build talent, provide liquidity incentives, and go to a builder programme.

The company has been the subject of intense scrutiny in a number of countries, including the United States, Singapore, and South Africa, in recent months, as the digital sector has reached a volume and valuation that has piqued regulators’ interest. However, the company has welcomed regulatory crackdowns and is striving to achieve compliance in order to take the digital sector to the next level.

Oil

Oil prices have steadied after rising in recent weeks because demand continues to rise as economies recover, while supply is limited as OPEC has decided to stick to its plan and, despite pressure from the US, has not increased its supply. Oil has become more stable as economic growth is expected to slow as a result of the emerging power crisis, which has added to market uncertainty. Brent, the crude oil benchmark, has risen nearly 15% since the beginning of September and has gained for five weeks in a row. Brent settled at $83.42 per barrel on Tuesday.

Gold

Fears of rising inflation have pushed the price of the precious metal up ahead of today’s inflation report. The appetite for risky assets has waned, and because gold is regarded as a safe haven asset, investors are increasing their holdings of the yellow metal. However, with tapering on the horizon and the dollar strengthening, gold has failed to achieve significant gains.

Asian Markets

It appears that Chinese regulators have no plans to ease the regulatory crackdowns that have caused turmoil in Chinese markets over the last year. According to reports, Beijing’s competition watchdog is creating more departments and planning to hire more people in an effort to efficiently monitor monopoly investigations. As of 11.15 p.m. EST, the Nikkei dropped 0.22% and the Shanghai index slumped 0.81%. The Hang Seng index, in Hong Kong, is flat. The ASX 200 index dipped 0.19% and the Seoul Kospi jumped 0.97%.