Morning Bid: Markets look to steady from political tremors

A look at the day ahead in European and global markets from Wayne Cole.

Asian markets have been cautiously gauging the fallout from the success of right-wing parties in the European Union and what it might mean for the cohesion of the bloc.

EUROSTOXX 50 futures did edge up 0.2%, steadying after Monday’s retreat, while FTSE futures were all but flat. The euro also held at $1.0766 and above the one-month low of $1.0733.

French President Emmanuel Macron was reportedly trying to line up left-wing and centrist parties against the right, but so far with little success.

The first opinion poll suggested the far-right National Rally party could win the snap election, but fall short of an absolute majority.

Markets are mixed across Asia, with Japan, South Korea and Taiwan all up, while China slipped as it caught up with post-payrolls pressure after a holiday on Monday.

Beijing also set the yuan at a seven-month low to reflect gains for the U.S. dollar as investors trim wagers on Federal Reserve rate cuts. The Fed meets on Wednesday and many analysts now assume its dot plot projection will no longer show three rate cuts for this year but two, or even just a single move.

Then again, fewer cuts this year might mean the easing is back loaded into 2025 and those plots shift to four cuts from three.

Note the Bank of Japan holds its meeting on Friday amid much talk it will taper monthly bond buying by a trillion yen to 5 trillion, as a step toward a hike of 10 basis points in July.

Elsewhere, markets gave a muted reaction to Apple’s long-awaited AI strategy, which integrates “Apple Intelligence” technology across a suite of apps. The iPhone maker’s shares were down 0.3% in after hours trade.

Optimists noted the software requires at least an iPhone 15 Pro or Pro Max and could drive customers to upgrade their hardware as a result.

Key developments that could influence markets on Tuesday:

– UK May Claimant count, April wages and unemployment data

– Various ECB officials speak, including chief economist Philip Lane and French central bank chief Francois Villeroy de Galhau

– Bank of Finland press conference on the outlook for the Finnish economy

– U.S. NFIB Small Business Optimism Survey

(By Wayne Cole; Editing by Sam Holmes)


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