Saturday, 20 February 2021

Markets mixed amid “a little bit of inflation fear”

Markets were mixed on Friday.

The S&P 500 fell 0.2 percent but the STOXX Europe 600 rose 0.5 percent.

Earlier in Asia, the Nikkei 225 fell 0.7 percent but the Shanghai Composite rose 0.6 percent.

US stocks had been mostly higher in the morning after Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Thursday that a large fiscal stimulus package is necessary.

However, the US 10-year Treasury yield rose again on Friday to 1.34 percent, and JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade, suggested that “this week may have put a little bit of inflation fear into people”.

The rising inflation concern comes amid better expectations for US economic growth.

Calculated Risk noted that forecasts for US first quarter GDP have risen, while New Deal democrat at the Bonddad blog said that strength in house and car purchases “is going to expand into the broader economy over the next 3 to 6 months unless there is an unexpected setback in the abatement of the pandemic”.

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