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GLOBAL MARKETS-European stocks fall; focus on Fed and U.S. tech earnings

Stock MarketsJan 27, 2021 10:06
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© Reuters.

* Graphic: Global asset performance
* Graphic: World FX rates
* Reuters Live Markets blog: LIVE/

LONDON, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Europe's share indexes opened
lower on Wednesday, while investors focused on the U.S Federal
Reserve meeting and U.S. tech giants' earnings.
MSCI world equity index, which tracks shares in 49
countries, was down 0.1% at 0842 GMT, having edged down in the
last week after it hit a new all-time high on Jan. 21
.MIWD00000PUS .
In the Asian session on Wednesday, shares were hurt by some
profit-taking, as investors grew wary of stretched valuations.
European share indexes opened in the red. The STOXX 600 was
down around 0.3% on the day at 0854 GMT .STOXX .
London's FTSE 100 was down 0.2% .FTSE while Germany's DAX
was down 0.5% .GDAXI .
The dollar rose against a basket of currencies as European
markets opened, and was at 90.275 at 0846 GMT, up 0.1% on the
day =USD . The Fed is not expected to make any policy changes but
investors will be listening for changes in tone around the
economic outlook and any mention of slowing down - or "tapering"
- the Fed's asset purchases. "The big question will be over any timetable for tapering
asset purchases, but Powell is likely to adopt a dovish tone on
this, and reiterate that it's premature to contemplate this
given the challenging near-term outlook and remaining
uncertainties," Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid wrote in a
note to clients.
The U.S. 10-year Treasury yield held close to the three-week
low it hit in the previous session, and was broadly flat on the
day at 1.0398% at 0846 GMT US10YT=RR .
Quarterly earnings from U.S. tech giants including Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
and Apple, due later in the session, were also in focus.
"With some financial assets currently trading at what many
are describing as bubble territory, there'll be heightened
attention on these releases to see whether these current
valuations are justified," Deutsche Bank's Jim Reid said.
Although S&P 500 e-minis were down around 0.1% EScv1 ,
Nasdaq futures were up 0.4% at 0847 GMT, helped by strong
Microsoft earnings the previous session NQcv1 . Microsoft said
its Azure cloud computing services grew by 50%. Heightened participation of retail investors in the stock
market has come into focus this week, as amateur traders on
Reddit's r/WallStreetBets stock trading discussion group piled
into GameStop GME.N , causing it to skyrocket while
professional shortsellers scrambled to cover losing bets.
To some stock market professionals, the recent moves look
symbolic of a stock market that may be overvalued at the end of
a year dominated by floods of fiscal and monetary stimulus to
ease the coronavirus crisis.
The International Monetary Fund raised its forecast for
global economic growth in 2021, and said the
coronavirus-triggered downturn last year would be nearly one
percentage point less severe than expected. Global COVID-19 cases surpassed 100 million on Wednesday and
countries around the world are struggling with new variants of
the virus and delays in vaccine rollouts. The United States aims to have enough vaccine doses to
vaccinate most Americans by the Summer, President Joe Biden said
on Tuesday. In Europe, supplies of the COVID-19 vaccine have been
delayed. Hospitalisations in France hit an eight-week high.
The euro was down 0.1% at $1.21455 at 0848 GMT, while euro
zone government bond yields edged up slightly.
Gold was down around 0.2% XAU= . Bitcoin was down around
3.3% BTC=BTSP .
Oil prices rose after industry data showed U.S. crude
stockpiles fell unexpectedly last week and China recorded its
lowest daily rise in COVID-19 cases in more than two weeks.
Emerging markets
Global asset performance
Fed Balance Sheet

GLOBAL MARKETS-European stocks fall; focus on Fed and U.S. tech earnings

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