Oil Prices Plummet As Dollar Soars And Global Recession Fears Grow

Oil prices continued to plummet on Monday, plunging to their lowest levels since January and continuing weeks of decline as fears of a looming global recession mount, inflation rates remain historically high and the strong performance of the U.S. dollar dampens demand.

The price of international benchmark Brent crude slipped below $85 a barrel for the first time since January on Monday morning. Brent futures for November slipped more than 1.5% to around $84.51 during early trading, recovering $85.34 at 9.44 a.m. London time.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI), the U.S. benchmark, dropped as low as $77.22 a barrel early Monday morning—its lowest level since early January—though it recovered and was trading at $78.57 4:52 a.m. Eastern time. The drop continues weeks of straight declines in oil prices, which caused both benchmarks to fall to their lowest levels since January last Friday.

Widespread fears of a recession and the strong performance of the U.S. dollar have dampened global demand for oil. The Dollar Index, which measures the U.S. dollar’s value against six other major currencies, hit a 20-year high on Wednesday and buyers using other currencies will have to spend more to buy the same dollar amount of crude oil.

Multiple factors have contributed to declining oil prices. As well as the dollar’s strong performance, soaring inflation rates and fears of a global economic downturn have dampened demand. Ongoing strict Covid curbs in China, the world’s largest energy consumer, has also pushed demand down. The impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which caused energy prices to skyrocket, has served to buffer oil prices against recession fears, though these fears now appear to be the key force driving the market.

I am a senior reporter for the Forbes breaking news team, covering health and science from the London office.

Source: Oil Prices Plummet As Dollar Soars And Global Recession Fears Grow

Critics by

Oil prices plunged about 5% to an eight-month low on Friday as the U.S. dollar hit its strongest level in more than two decades and on fears rising interest rates will tip major economies into recession, cutting demand for oil.

Brent futures fell $4.31, or 4.8%, to settle at $86.15 a barrel, down about 6% for the week. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude fell $4.75, or 5.7%, to settle at $78.74, down about 7% for the week.

It was the fourth straight week of declines for both benchmarks, the first time this has happened since December. Both were in technically oversold territory, with WTI on track for its lowest settlement since Jan. 10 and Brent for its lowest since Jan. 14. U.S. gasoline and diesel futures were also down more than 5%.

The U.S. Federal Reserve raised interest rates by a hefty 75 basis points on Wednesday. Central banks around the world followed suit with their own hikes, raising the risk of economic slowdowns.

“Oil tanks as global growth concerns hit panic mode given a chorus of central bank commitments to fight inflation. It seems central banks are poised to remain aggressive with rate hikes and that will weaken both economic activity and the short-term crude demand outlook,” aid Edward Moya, senior market analyst at data and analytics firm OANDA.

The U.S. dollar was on track for its highest close against a basket of other currencies since May 2002. A strong dollar reduces demand for oil by making the fuel more expensive for buyers using other currencies.

“We had the dollar exploding higher and pushing down dollar-denominated commodities like oil and growing fears over the looming global recession that is coming as the central banks raise interest rates,” said John Kilduff, partner at Again Capital LLC in New York.

The euro zone’s downturn in business activity deepened in September, a survey showed, suggesting a recession looms as consumers rein in spending and as governments urge energy conservation following Russia’s moves to cut off European supply.

Wall Street’s main indexes slid more than 2% on Friday as investors feared the U.S. Federal Reserve’s hawkish policy actions to quell inflation could trigger a recession and dent corporate earnings.The dollar <.DXY> index reached its highest in over two decades, pressuring oil prices. Russia launched referendums aimed at annexing four occupied regions of Ukraine, raising stakes of the war in what Kyiv called a sham.

On the supply side, efforts to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal have stalled as Tehran insists on closure of the U.N. nuclear watchdog’s investigations, a senior U.S. State Department official said, easing expectations of a resurgence of Iranian crude oil exports

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European Central Bank Raises Interest Rates For The First Time In 11 Years As Global Inflation Surges

The European Central Bank on Thursday authorized its first interest rate hike in 11 years in a bid to help cool rising inflation, becoming the latest central bank to more aggressively unwind policy that fueled economic growth during the pandemic even as global recession fears continue to rise.

In a statement on Thursday, the ECB said it would raise rates by 50 basis points as a “key step to make sure inflation returns to its 2% target over the medium term”—coming in at the higher end of expectations calling for an increase of at least 25 basis points.

Officials also signaled additional hikes to come, saying “further normalization” of interest rates will be appropriate, though they suggested the larger hike on Thursday will allow them to move more slowly with future increases, adding: “The frontloading today . . . allows the Governing Council to make a transition to a meeting-by-meeting approach to interest rate decisions.”

The decision comes after data showing inflation in the United Kingdom skyrocketed 9.4% in June, hitting a new 40-year high and surpassing similarly high inflation of 9.1% in the United States.

In a speech late last month, ECB President Christine Lagarde warned there are “growing signs”—including the ongoing war in Ukraine—that suggest “supply shocks hitting the economy could linger for longer” and further warned unforeseen shocks could de-anchor inflation expectations.

Lagarde doubled down on the message Thursday, telling reporters at a press conference that inflation could remain “undesirably high for some time” while also tempering concerns by saying she still doesn’t believe a recession in Europe is the most likely scenario over the next year.

Though it was initially flat for the day, the United Kingdom benchmark FTSE 100 fell 0.9% to 7,200 points after the announcement. Global stocks didn’t fare much better: S&P 500 futures erased premarket gains to trade roughly flat by 9:15 EDT.

Rising food and energy prices—fueled in part by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—have elevated inflation around the world, pushing many central banks to raise interest rates, which help lower prices by making borrowing more expensive and thereby curbing demand. Increasingly, however, experts worry aggressive central bank policy to curb ongoing price spikes will usher in low economic growth this year and potentially risk a global recession.

“Excessive rate hikes could push the consumer-led economy into not only a short-term, but also a longer-term recession,” says Nigel Green, the CEO of $12 billion advisory deVere Group, warning of the risk that central banks “hit the brakes too hard” in the coming months.

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I’m a senior reporter at Forbes focusing on markets and finance. I graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where I double-majored in business

Source: European Central Bank Raises Interest Rates For The First Time In 11 Years As Global Inflation Surges

Critics:

The Ukraine war and Covid supply chain issues have driven up everyday costs across the world, putting pressure on households. The eurozone is vulnerable because it relies heavily on Russia for its oil and gas. This week it urged member states to begin rationing supplies amid fears Moscow will halt gas deliveries this year, causing further price spikes.

Explaining its decision to raise rates, ECB president Christine Lagarde said: “Economic activity [in the eurozone] is slowing. Russia’s unjustified aggression towards Ukraine is an ongoing drag on growth. “We expect inflation to remain undesirably high for some time owing to continued pressure from energy and food prices and pipeline pressures in the pricing chain,” she added.

The bank says further rate hikes “will be appropriate” and that it will take a “meeting-by-meeting” approach to raising rates. The idea is that by making it more expensive to borrow money, people will spend less, bringing down demand and therefore prices. However, there are also concerns that higher rates could push the bloc into recession – which is defined as two successive quarters of economic decline.

These fears helped push the euro to a 20-year low against the dollar in recent weeks. The ECB began cutting interest rates after the 2008 financial crisis to stimulate growth, and took them as low as -0.5% during the pandemic. The idea was to encourage banks to lend rather than deposit money with the ECB.

Earlier this year the bank signalled it planned to increase rates again, although economists had only expected an increase of 0.25 percentage points in July. Some economists have criticised the ECB for moving too slowly, pointing out that the UK and US began raising rates months ago. Carsten Brzeski, chief eurozone economist at ING bank, said: “In hindsight, the very gradual and cautious normalisation process the ECB started at the end of last year has simply been too slow and too late.”

However, there are concerns about how higher borrowing costs will affect highly indebted European nations, including Italy and Greece.

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ECB Warns House Price Correction Looms As Interest Rates Rise

Eurozone property prices are set to correct as interest rates begin to rise in response to higher inflation, posing greater risks for low-income households, the Bank has warned. Central European.

A reversal in the region’s housing markets was one of the main risks identified by the ECB’s biannual financial stability review, which also warned that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine meant more companies were likely to default due to weaker growth, higher inflation and rising borrowing costs. .

Anticipating that asset prices could fall further if economic growth continues to weaken or if inflation rises faster than expected, the ECB said a sharp rise in rates could cause a “reversal” in oil prices. real estate in the euro zone, which it said were already overvalued by around 15%, relative to overall economic output and rents.

The central bank is preparing to raise its deposit rate in July for the first time in a decade and markets are expecting four quarter-point hikes this year, which it says “could challenge the valuations of riskier assets, such as equities”.

Mortgage rates in the eurozone have already been rising since the start of the year. The ECB’s composite indicator of the cost of borrowing to buy a home rose from a low of 1.3% last September to 1.47% in March.

“A sharp rise in real interest rates could induce house price corrections in the near term, with the current low level of interest rates making a substantial reversal in house prices more likely,” the statement said. ECB.

House prices rose nearly 10% in the euro zone last year, the fastest rate in more than two decades, according to data from Eurostat, the statistics office of the European Commission. They could fall between 0.83 and 1.17% for every 0.1 percentage point increase in mortgage rates, after adjusting for inflation, the ECB calculated.

The Bundesbank recently warned that German banks were becoming too complacent about the risk of borrower default and the possibility of rising interest rates, increasing the amount of capital lenders must put up as collateral for their mortgages.

“We think the German real estate market should peak in the next two years, probably around 2024, although it could be much earlier if we have an interest rate shock,” said Jochen Möbert, an analyst at Deutsche Bank Research. .

Rising interest rates will likely prompt institutional investors to shift money they have put into real estate into the German bond market, Möbert said, predicting that would likely happen when Bund yields rise from 1 % currently at between 2 and 4%. .

“Rental yields are below 4% in German cities on average and in metropolises they are lower, in some cases they are even 2.5%, so once the risk-free rates reach this level, it would be logical to go back to the Bunds,” he added.

The central bank said a switch to fixed-rate mortgages would shield many households from the immediate impact of rising borrowing costs.

Wealthier households could also cushion the blow by saving less or tapping into extra savings accumulated during the coronavirus pandemic, he said. However, he warned that this would leave lower-income households “more exposed to the inflationary shock”.

The ECB said its recent “vulnerability analysis” of the banking sector had shown it was “resilient to the macroeconomic ramifications of the war in Ukraine”.

Banks accounting for more than three-quarters of the sector’s assets would maintain a Tier 1 capital ratio above 9% in its “worst case scenario”, in which the eurozone economy shrinks over the next three years, it said. said the central bank.

Rising interest rates should increase banks’ credit margins in the short term. But Luis de Guindos, vice-president of the ECB, warned that “in the medium term, the situation could be different”.

De Guindos said banks’ profit margins could be eroded by a “duration gap” between rising short-term funding costs for banks and their longer-term loans, such as mortgages, which hold rates down. down for many years.

He admitted that the ECB had been “too pessimistic” in its 2020 warning that the fallout from the pandemic could lead to a €1.4 billion increase in non-performing loans for banks, which did not unfold. materialized as bankruptcies have instead fallen thanks to massive state support.

However, he said rising inflation and rising borrowing costs could cause some companies that have already been weakened during the pandemic to default. “Perhaps the insolvencies that didn’t happen during the pandemic could, at least in part, happen now,” he added.

ECB warns that a correction of prices real estate profile with rise of interest rates

Source: ECB warns house price correction looms as interest rates rise

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Inflation Increases Risk of Recession In Global Economy

The Federal Reserve’s bid to calm inflation by raising interest rates and withdrawing emergency stimulus programs is gearing up just as the global economy is displaying worrisome signs of weakness, aggravated by the war in Ukraine and covid’s continuing hold on industrial supply chains.

The risk, some economists said, is that the Fed and other central banks that are implementing similar anti-inflation policies may adjust too slowly to a complex and fast-changing global landscape.

However, the persistence of a tight labour market and high inflation pose concerns for the Biden administration and the Federal Reserve. This week, the US central bank raised its benchmark interest rate by 0.5 percentage points for the first time since 2000 — to a target range of between 0.75 and 1 per cent — to curb rising prices. Inflation in the US is currently running at a 40-year high.

Meanwhile, US stocks fell on Friday, extending sharp losses from the previous session, as signs of a tightening jobs market compounded inflation worries. European shares also declined, with the regional Stoxx 600 index losing almost 2 per cent, putting it on track to end the week more than 4 per cent down. London’s FTSE 100 lost 1.3 per cent and Germany’s Xetra Dax also fell 1.3 per cent.

The Nasdaq Composite, comprised of many of the largest US technology companies, closed down 5 per cent yesterday, in its biggest one-day decline since 2020. The blue-chip S&P 500 index also declined on Thursday with a 3.5 per cent loss. As the world continues to deal with the economic impact of the pandemic, the war in Ukraine is exacerbating inflationary problems.

Central banks are faced with the risk that controlling rising prices could lead to economic decline. The Bank of England warned yesterday that the UK economy was heading towards a recession and inflation would hit 10 per cent this year, as it lifted the interest rate to 1 per cent, the country’s highest level since 2009.

With UK prices likely to rise at their fastest rate in more than 40 years as sustained double-digit inflation becomes possible for the first time since the 1970s, the BoE — which is celebrating 25 years of independence this week — faces challenges that it has not encountered in the past quarter of a century, writes economics editor Chris Giles.

Line chart of CPI inflation and successive BoE forecasts, 2021-22 (%) showing The Bank did not expect to have to tackle double-digit inflation Latest news Ukraine urges Médecins Sans Frontières to evacuate wounded from Azovstal steel plant Glass Lewis advises Amazon shareholders to vote against pay policy German industry suffers biggest drop in output since start of pandemic For up-to-the-minute news updates.

Need to know: the economy China’s president Xi Jinping has reaffirmed his commitment to the country’s controversial zero-Covid strategy, warning against “any slackening” in the effort and vowing to crack down on criticism of the policy despite signs of damage to the economy. US homebuyers are stretching their budgets to buy new homes and rushing to strike deals to avoid higher mortgage financing costs, according to the latest industry data.

Mortgage rates have reached their highest levels in more than a decade, according to the recent Freddie Mac survey. Latest for the UK/Europe Momentum is building for the European Central Bank to raise interest rates in July to fight soaring inflation, after dovish policymakers indicated they were ready to accept an end to almost eight years of negative borrowing costs.

The EU is considering providing more time and money to Hungary to adapt to an embargo on Russian oil after talks on Brussels’ plans for imposing sanctions became “stuck”. Vodafone, the UK telecoms group under pressure from an activist investor, has strengthened its board with two appointments. They are Simon Segars, former chief executive of Arm, the UK-based chip business, and Delphine Cunci, an industry heavyweight in France.

Europe’s largest activist fund Cevian Capital has been pushing the mobile group to refresh its management, which it believes has insufficient experience. Help us compile our ranking of Europe’s Diversity Leaders. Employees and workplace experts are invited to complete a short survey to assess companies’ progress on inclusivity by June 12.

Coronavirus infections in England have fallen to their lowest level since the start of the year, according to official data published today, as the spread of the disease slows across the UK. Global latest US regulators have travelled to mainland China to discuss a potential compromise over audit disclosures that could stop around 270 Chinese companies from being delisted by New York exchanges, according to two people close to the matter.

Tomorrow you can hear Henry Kissinger, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and more at our inaugural US FTWeekend Festival in Washington, DC. Business German sportswear group Adidas has warned that its operating profit this year would be lower than previously expected, as the company struggles with disrupted supply chains, closed shops in China and rising costs.

Operating profit tumbled 38 per cent to €437mn in the first quarter as the company was hit by the economic fallout from China’s strict Covid policies. Australia’s biggest investment bank Macquarie Group profited from volatility on global commodity markets and record dealmaking, driving full-year net profit up 56 per cent from the previous year to a record high of A$4.7bn ($3.3bn).

British Airways has been forced to cut flight schedules further as it struggles to hire staff quickly enough to meet renewed demand for travel after culling nearly 10,000 jobs during the pandemic, raising concerns that the carrier could miss out on a bumper summer for European airlines. France has warmly welcomed Binance’s bid to put down roots in one of Europe’s top financial centres, drawing a deep divide with watchdogs in the UK that rejected the crypto giant.

Binance this week received a nod from French financial regulators, a move that clears the way for the crypto exchange to establish a significant presence in the G7 nation that could also help the company unlock access to other jurisdictions across Europe. Boeing will move its headquarters to the Washington, DC area from Chicago, bringing the company closer to federal lawmakers and rival defence contractors.

The move comes during a tumultuous period for the company, which has been subject to greater regulatory scrutiny following two fatal crashes of its 737 Max jet in 2018 and 2019 as well as the discovery of flaws in its 787 Dreamliner. Science round-up The true total global pandemic death toll was about 15mn by the end of 2021, based on an analysis of excess mortality, said the World Health Organization.

Source: Federal Reserve is raising interest rates even as the global economy struggles – The Washington Post

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Why The Dow Plunged More Than 1,000 Points? Should I Wait For Stocks To Sink Lower

What a difference a day makes. Fresh off the best percentage gain for the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.30% since Nov. 9, 2020, the blue-chip index got clobbered, along with the rest of the stock market, including the S&P 500 SPX, -0.57% and the Nasdaq Composite COMP, -1.40%.

Not even U.S. Treasurys were safe, with the 10-year Treasury note TMUBMUSD10Y, 3.127% climbing above 3% as prices fall.

Some experts attributed Wednesday’s rally to a statement by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell that a 75-basis-point increase wasn’t being actively considered by policy makers at the central bank at coming meetings.

The remark came after the Fed on Wednesday delivered the first half-percentage-point interest-rate hike, as had been widely expected, since 2000, in the final months of President Bill Clinton’s second term.

The Fed has been hiking rates to combat a surge in inflation that materialized in the aftermath of the COVID-19 shutdowns and dislocations, and which has been exacerbated by bloody conflict in Ukraine following Russia’s invasion in late February.

Some industry watchers peg Thursday’s selloff partly to fears that inflation will continue to dog the economy in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world.

Data on Thursday showed that the productivity of American workers and businesses sank at an 7.5% annual pace in the first quarter, marking the biggest drop since 1947, amid supply shortages and production bottlenecks.

“It was a setback for our Roaring 2020s scenario of a technology-led productivity growth boom offsetting the chronic shortage of labor,” according to Yardeni Research, a provider of global investment strategy founded by Ed Yardeni, a MarketWatch contributor.

Meanwhile, Greg Bassuk, CEO at AXS Investments in New York, said the day’s action reflects “a continuation of 2022’s market roller coaster of high volatility, with this session’s strong spiral downward erasing yesterday’s gains.”

Bassuk told MarketWatch that “investors are selling today on renewed concerns regarding the plethora of continued uncertainties.”

The AXS CEO pointed to tensions with China, Russia’s siege in Ukraine, as well as a mixed bag of corporate earnings and nagging concerns about COVID-19 hamstringing a more powerful recovery in parts of the world.

Recession fears and inflation worries have been the centerpiece of the current bout of bearishness on Wall Street. “There’s no doubt that inflation, rising rates and volatility will continue to characterize the market environment in [the second quarter] and beyond,” Bassuk said.

“What is really interesting about these markets is that there are these every-other-day changes in either direction where investors are outrageously bullish, or outrageously bearish the next day,” said Sylvia Jablonski, chief executive and chief investment officer at Defiance ETFs in New York.

Indeed, MarketWatch’s Bill Watts wrote that, with the exception of 2020, the S&P 500 has already topped or is on track to exceed annual totals of 2%-or-greater moves for every year stretching back to 2011.

“Inflation may have peaked, growth may be slowing, but it is still positive. The consumer is still spending, [and] employment is at all-time highs,” she said, going on to point to the up to $2 trillion in excess savings said to have been amassed during the pandemic.

Market Extra (July 2021):

The volatile state of the market is stoking confusion about the outlook. Is this time to jump into stocks, or should investors wait for a better entry point? Or should we heed billionaire investor Paul Tudor Jones’s advice and stay clear of traditional markets altogether?

History suggests that you can’t time the market and that, over a long period, the market wins. The big question is what’s your time frame what’s your tolerance for pain?

The slump in bonds, with yields rising as prices fall, is complicating matters for some investors. Treasurys, notably the benchmark 10-year U.S. government bond TMUBMUSD10Y, 3.127%, traditionally are seen as a refuge in times of uncertainty, but they also have been undone given the Fed’s current rate-hike plan, which has led to selling in bonds in the hope of richer yields to come.

Source: Why the Dow plunged more than 1,000 points? Should I wait for stocks to sink lower? Here’s what some pros think. – MarketWatch

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More contents:

Based on 19 bear markets in the last 140 years, here’s where the current downturn may end, says Bank of America

Stock market selloff in ‘liquidation’ stage. Why it needs to get ‘hotter’ before it burns out.

This trader predicted the bond meltdown, tech selloff and oil’s surge. Here’s what she says is coming next.

Barron’s: JD.com and NIO Face More Delisting Concerns. The Stocks Are Falling.

The Dow Dropped Again, Jobs Growth Was Strong—and What Else Happened in the Stock Market Today

College enrollment is falling. Here’s how it could impact the economy

‘The pandemic boom in home sales is over’: Mortgage rates soar to highest level since 2009 as the Fed pressures the housing market

The long bull market run in bonds has come to an end,’ says Guggenheim’s Scott Minerd

Dollar soars as Bank of England’s grim economic forecast gives investors reason to sell off Treasurys, stocks

A rough 4 months for stocks: S&P 500 books the worst start to a year since 1939. Here’s what pros say you should do now.

China-focused ETFs sink as Blinken reportedly plans to affirm that China is the main U.S. rival

U.S. wealth grew by $19 trillion during the pandemic — but mostly for the very rich

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