A look at the day ahead in European and global markets from Ankur Banerjee
Investors have found their appetite for risky assets at the start of a crucial week, shrugging off the disappointment of China setting a modest target for economic growth this year, with European stocks set to carry the momentum.
Coming off its best weekly performance since start of the year, the continent-wide STOXX might aim for another record high as traders await January retail sales data for the Eurozone later in the day.
Meanwhile, the market’s focus is firmly on Fed Chair Powell’s two-day testimony before the U.S. congress (on Tuesday and Wednesday) and the February jobs report (due on Friday) that will likely dictate the path of the U.S. central bank for the near future.
While investors have come to accept (sort of) that the Fed will likely keep interest rates higher for longer, there are fresh fears that strong economic data will lead the central bank to go back to jumbo hikes.
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Hawkish rhetoric from Fed speakers continued over the weekend, with San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President Mary Daly the latest to sound a warning on the inflationary threat.
The market largely expects Powell to be hawkish this week but given his testimony comes before the jobs report is released, he will likely aim to keep all options open.
Over in China, the country’s leadership set a 5% target for economic growth this year, which analysts called conservative and pragmatic, as they kicked off the annual session of the National People’s Congress.
In the corporate world, Italian state lender CDP has bid for the fixed-line network of former phone monopoly Telecom Italia, rivalling an offering from U.S. firm KKR.
Key developments that could influence markets on Monday:
Economic events: Eurozone January retail sales, February S&P Global PMIs for Germany, France and Eurozone
Speakers: ECB Chief Economist Philip Lane
Reporting by Ankur Banerjee; Editing by Edmund Klamann
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