Traders turn to oil stocks as markets await data
European stocks fluctuated in direction on Thursday as traders sought to look for oil stocks and prepare for more economic data on the outlook for the US economy.
The regional Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.2 percent, while the FTSE 100 was flat and Germany’s Dax rose 0.3 percent.
Investors bought energy companies such as BP and Shell, up 1 per cent, and Norway’s Equinor, up 4 per cent, as crude oil touched its highest level since late March. Brent crude futures rose 0.5% to $114.60 a barrel.
US markets futures indicated that the S&P 500 will open flat while the Nasdaq 100 is down 0.3 percent.
Markets have been volatile in recent weeks as traders prepare for global central banks, led by the Federal Reserve, to tighten monetary policy even as fears grow that global growth will falter.
In a sign that investors are looking for safer assets, the 10-year US Treasury yield fell to its lowest level since April 2014, at 2.7 percent, down 0.04 percentage points. The yield on German 10-year bonds, the benchmark for European sovereign debt, was also down 0.03 percentage point. Bond yields fall when prices rise.
Three US economic reports due to be published later in the day may shed more light on the state of the world’s largest economy, including weekly employment figures.
“The market is paying more attention to economic data. A few weeks ago it was all about inflation, not other macro data. Now everything that can affect growth is important, especially everything that can affect growth,” said Ann Bodeau, global fixed income portfolio manager at Amundi. regarding consumption.
The reports come on the heels of the release of minutes from the US central bank’s last meeting late on Wednesday that show it is ready to raise interest rates steadily but slowly over the coming months.
“no doubt [Federal Reserve Committee] Antje Praefcke, senior currency strategist at Commerzbank, said members are well aware of the downside risks from higher interest rates. “However, given that inflation was very much on everyone’s mind in early May, it should come as no surprise that the minutes do not reflect any thoughts about a recession or a hard landing.”
Copper, an indicator of the health of the global economy due to its widespread use, fell for the third day in a row, amid fears of a global slowdown. Futures fell 0.3 percent to $9,343 a tonne in London.
In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.3 percent, and Japan’s Topix index was flat.
“We’re not a million miles away from the right time to buy,” said Tim Graf, global head of macroeconomic strategy for Europe at State Street Global Markets. “But you’ve had such a huge performance in assets and foam that I don’t think we’ve seen all give up so far.”