Equity futures in the United States fell in contrast to Wednesday, potentially giving back the majority of yesterday''s impressive gains, as investor focus returned to the impact of increasing inflation on global economic growth.
Fresh inflation statistics from South Africa to Great Britain indicated that central bank action had at least jusqu''a present little impact on consumer price pressures, while digging into these statistics demonstrated a greater increase in their impact, particularly in the United Kingdom, where CPI surpassed a four-decade high of 1.3 percent.
The possibility of slower growth for the world''s major economies was also linked to a weaker session for Asia stocks, which fell sharply due to concerns over a fresh round of Covid restrictions. That sent the US dollar firmly higher in overnight trading and established the ''risk-off'' narrative that slowed futures.
The debate over the recession in the United States has also slowed, as did data from the Atlanta Fed, showing that there was essentially no growth in the domestic economy this quarter, followed by a 0.5 percent drop in weekly unemployment, a slow increase in consumer expenditure, and a weakening housing market.
All of these questions are likely to form the most important questions presented to President-elect Jerome Powell as he begins two days of testimony on Capitol Hill later this morning.
With a follow-on session before the House Financial Services Committee on Thursday, Powell will meet members of the Senate Banking Committee, despite the fastest rate of domestic inflation in over four decades, and just four months ahead of a key mid-term election that might see Republicans regain control of both Houses of Congress.
Amid the aging housing market, mortgage rates are approaching 6%, the highest rate since 2008.
Oil sluggish as President Biden appeals for a gas tax holiday to lower pump prices.
Stocks Slump, Biden Gas Tax Plea, Powell Testimony, Boeing, and Roxe - Five Things to Know
In light of that backdrop, Europe''s region-wide Stoxx 600 was reduced by 1.4 percent in mid-day trading in Frankfurt, despite a 2.3% decline for Asia''s MSCI ex-Japan benchmark.
The benchmark 10-year Treasury bond yields in the United States remained at 3.228 percent in overnight trading, up from a 3.153% peg for 2-year notes, while the dollar index slowed by 1% against a basket of six global currencies to 104.477.
Futures linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average are showing a 325 point opening bell drop, while those linked to the S&P 500, which is down 21% for the year, are priced for a 47 point decline. On Wall Street, futures linked to the US Financial Journal are looking at a 160 point opening bell pullback.
Global oil prices were particularly in the red, with President Joe Biden planning to solicit Congress to suspend the federal gas tax for at least three months, while urging states to pay similar reliefs to help relieve inflation in the world''s largest economy.
The widely anticipated change along with the effects of new Covid infections in China and the possibility of further business and factory restrictions took nearly $5 from WTI crude futures for August delivery, which was last seen changing hands at $104.69 per barrel.
According to AAA''s data, gasoline prices in the United States rose from this week''s all-time high to a national average of $4.955 per gallon last night, a move that left pump prices at least 61.5 percent higher than this time last year.
Reportshares of The Boeing Company have dropped 2% in terms of individual stocks, with the planemaker warning that supply chain delays will likely continue until at least the end of next year.
CEO Dave Calhoun said aircraft demand is increasing in response to a robust rise in post-pandemic travel, although labor and part shortages will make it difficult for suppliers to meet customer demands.