Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Markets fall after Tillerson exit but no major sell-off expected

Markets mostly fell on Tuesday.

The S&P 500 fell 0.6 percent and the STOXX Europe 600 fell 1.0 percent. However, the Nikkei 225 rose 0.7 percent earlier in the day.

A report on Tuesday showed that the US consumer price index rose 0.2 percent in February, down from 0.5 percent in January.

Karyn Cavanaugh, senior market strategist at Voya Financial, said that the report showed that “inflation is not too hot and not too cold”. She added: “Combined with the fact that there is still slack in the labor market we don’t worry too much about inflation.”

The announcement that US President Donald Trump has decided to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had little lasting impact on the market.

“Investors got used to the game of musical chairs in the White House and realize that it’s not a true economic risk,” said Cavanaugh.

Indeed, most analysts think that the personnel shake-ups in the Trump administration will not result in a major market sell-off unless a full-blown trade war breaks out.

“If you look historically, political headlines tend to bother people for about 15 minutes, and the market tends to move on. Even concerning political headlines tend to not roil the markets for sustained periods in general,” said Jonathan Golub, Credit Suisse chief US market strategist.

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