On Wednesday, August 2, the U.S. markets closed lower after Fitch downgraded the long-term credit rating of U.S. NASDAQ fell as traders focused on the downgrade of U.S. debt and rising Treasury yields.
Major indices had no boost from the better-than-expected ADP Employment Change report, which indicated that private enterprises gained 324,000 jobs in July.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.98 % at 35,282.52 on Wednesday; the S&P 500 fell 1.38%, closing at 4,513.39; and the Nasdaq Composite slid 2.17%, ending the session at 13,973.45.
Asian Markets Today
Japan’s Nikkei 225 ended Thursday’s session lower by 1.61% at 32,180.00; Local stocks were hit by a mix of profit-taking and uncertainty over the Bank of Japan’s stance on its ultra-dovish monetary policy. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.58%, ending the session at 7,311.70, country’s trade surplus remained steady in June.
Shanghai Composite closed the session at 3,280.46, up 0.58%; Shenzhen CSI 300 rose 0.88% to close at 4,004.98, with data showing Chinese service sector activity growth of more than expected in July. The Caixin services purchasing managers index for July rose to 54.1, more than estimates of 52.5 and the prior month’s 53.9. Hang Seng index in Hong Kong fell 0.67%, closing at 19,384.00.
Eurozone at 05:00 AM ET
The Pan-European STOXX 600 index is down 1.12%. The DAX index in Germany traded 1.14% lower, and the CAC 40 in France fell 1.25%. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 traded lower by 1.56%. Stocks struggle as investors await the Bank of England’s rate decision.
Commodities at 05:00 AM ET
Crude Oil WTI was trading lower by 0.23% at $79.31/bbl, and Brent was down 0.26% to $82.98/bbl. Natural Gas was trading higher by 0.77% at $2.496. Gold was trading down 0.09% at $1,972.56, Silver was lower by 0.89% to $23.66, and Copper was down 0.34% to $3.830.
US Futures at 05.00 AM ET
Dow futures were down 0.38%, S&P 500 futures slid 0.47%, and Nasdaq 100 futures were down 0.62%.
Forex at 05.00 AM ET
The U.S. Dollar Index was up 0.16% to 102.76. USD/JPY was down 0.27% to 142.94, while AUD/USD was down 0.28% to 0.6520.
The expected easing posture of central banks globally suggested to investors that the U.S. Federal Reserve may be slower to raise the nation’s overnight interest rates, analysts said.
“There’s growing realization that the events in foreign economies have far more impact on U.S. rates than previously accepted, People are thinking overseas troubles are going to keep rates lower and that’s been keeping an underlying bid to the (stock) market” said Michael Matousek, head trader at U.S. Global Investors Inc in San Antonio, citing a research note.
Reduced expectations for the Federal Reserve also hurt the U.S. dollar, which has fallen against a basket of currencies in four of the last five trading sessions.
The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against six major world rivals, fell 0.2 percent to 95.521.
“As it stands now, market participants see a less than 50-50 chance of rates rising by December. The dollar will continue to struggle until that chance rises meaningfully,” said Omer Esiner, chief market analyst at Commonwealth Foreign Exchange in Washington.
Produced in association with Benzinga
Edited by Eunice Anyango Oyule and Judy J. Rotich