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US Equity-Index Futures Rise as Traders Await CPI: Markets Wrap

(Bloomberg) — US index futures rose and the dollar slid amid forecasts inflation in the world’s largest economy will post the lowest figure this year, warranting a less hawkish Federal Reserve.

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Contracts on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 advanced at least 0.5% each after the underlying indexes climbed on Monday by the most in December. The greenback halted a two-day rally, while Treasuries gained. Oil traded higher on signs of further easing in China’s Covid rules. Oracle Corp. jumped in premarket New York trading after posting results above expectations.

US stocks advanced Monday as traders took comfort from economists’ projection for a 7.3% expansion in the US consumer price index for November. If that expectation comes true, it would be the lowest reading in 11 months and the fifth consecutive drop. While that would still leave inflation much higher than the Fed’s target of 2%, it could justify a slowdown in the pace of monetary tightening, with a projected half-point move on Wednesday. However, it also leaves the bar low for disappointment and a selloff.

“Today’s US CPI data will give us an idea on how the market pricing for the Fed’s terminal rate will clash with the dot plot projections that will come out tomorrow, and that will, in all cases, hammer any potentially optimistic market sentiment,” Ipek Ozkardeskaya, a senior analyst at Swissquote Bank, wrote in a note. “Therefore, even if we see a great CPI print and a nice market rally today, it may not extend past the Fed decision on Wednesday.”

The European equity benchmark recovered from Monday’s losses as traders awaited the US release but were also mindful of the European Central Bank’s rate decision due Thursday. The continent’s policymakers are expected to follow the Fed with their own half-point hike. Meanwhile, data showed that UK wages are rising at close to a record pace, maintaining pressure on the Bank of England to keep hiking interest rates despite a worsening economic outlook.

Treasuries advanced with the 10-year rate shedding 2 basis points. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index traded below its 200-day moving average, having fallen below it earlier this month. An Asian equity benchmark rose after Hong Kong’s decision to scrap its three-day Covid monitoring period for arriving travelers.

Crude oil rallied, with West Texas Intermediate futures trading around $74 a barrel. China’s ambassador to the US said the nation will continue relaxing its curbs and will welcome more international travelers soon.

Oracle rose 2.7% in premarket trading.The software company reported quarterly sales that exceeded analysts’ estimates on a strong effort from its Cerner digital health records unit.

Key events this week:

  • US CPI, Tuesday

  • FOMC rate decision and Fed Chair news conference, Wednesday

  • China medium-term lending, property investment, retail sales, industrial production, surveyed jobless, Thursday

  • ECB rate decision and ECB President Lagarde briefing, Thursday

  • Rate decisions for UK BOE, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thursday

  • US cross-border investment, business inventories, empire manufacturing, retail sales, initial jobless claims, industrial production, Thursday

  • Eurozone S&P Global PMI, CPI, Friday

Some of the main moves in markets:

Stocks

  • Futures on the S&P 500 rose 0.5% as of 6:28 a.m. New York time

  • Futures on the Nasdaq 100 rose 0.5%

  • Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.5%

  • The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.7%

  • The MSCI World index rose 0.2%

Currencies

  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.1%

  • The euro was little changed at $1.0545

  • The British pound rose 0.2% to $1.2299

  • The Japanese yen rose 0.1% to 137.53 per dollar

Cryptocurrencies

  • Bitcoin rose 1.5% to $17,430.38

  • Ether rose 0.8% to $1,285.76

Bonds

  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries declined two basis points to 3.59%

  • Germany’s 10-year yield was little changed at 1.95%

  • Britain’s 10-year yield advanced six basis points to 3.26%

Commodities

  • West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.9% to $73.82 a barrel

  • Gold futures rose 0.3% to $1,798.50 an ounce

This story was produced with the assistance of Bloomberg Automation.

–With assistance from Tassia Sipahutar and Jason Scott.

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