US and European stock futures dipped Wednesday, while Asian equities traded mostly higher after President Donald Trump said he is asking Congress to amend the pandemic aid legislation that was passed earlier this week. Treasuries ticked up.
S&P 500 futures fell as much as 0.7% before paring most of the losses. Trump demanded that lawmakers increase the stimulus checks due to go out to most Americans to $2,000 from $600, just a day after Congress passed a $900 billion bipartisan relief package. Investors also continue to assess the vaccine rollout after a new virus variant sparked more severe lockdowns. Gold climbed while crude oil retreated.
Fresh jitters are creeping into a global stock rally after equities touched a record high last week. The president’s comments cast doubt on how long it will take for the spending package to become law and for the money to be distributed to Americans.
“For now, markets appear to be holding off pressing the sell button until the situation clarifies,” said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst for Asia Pacific at Oanda.
Meantime, Europe and regions from Canada to Hong Kong have suspended travel links to the UK, piling pressure onto the government as it tries to salvage a free-trade agreement with the European Union. The bloc rebuffed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s latest concessions on fishing rights.
Here are some key events coming up:
- EIA crude oil inventory report is due Wednesday.
- US jobless claims, durables, personal income data comes Wednesday.
- US bond and stock trading and markets in other parts of the world will shut early on Thursday for the Christmas holidays. Most global markets are shut Friday.
Here are the main moves in markets:
- S&P 500 futures fell 0.1% as of 6:15 a.m. in London. The gauge fell 0.2% on Tuesday.
- Japan’s Topix index rose 0.2%.
- Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.5%.
- Shanghai Composite rose 0.5%.
- South Korea’s Kospi index rose 1%.
- Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index climbed 0.7%.
- Euro Stoxx 50 futures fell 0.1%.
- The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index dipped 0.2%.
- The yen added 0.2% to 103.45 per dollar.
- The euro bought $1.2185, up 0.2%.
- The offshore yuan was at 6.5378 per dollar.
- The yield on 10-year Treasuries was at 0.91%.
- Australia’s 10-year bond yield fell about three basis points to 0.92%.
- West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell 1.5% to $46.31 a barrel.
- Gold was at $1,864 an ounce, up 0.2%.