Emerging market stocks rose on Thursday, as did several currencies, as investors looked past the minutes of the latest Federal Reserve policy meeting on Wednesday in which a cautious outlook was reinforced.
During the last meeting, nearly all Fed policymakers voiced support for the slowing of U.S. interest rate hikes. They warned, however, that this would largely depend on the extent to which inflation must be curbed.
The MSCI EM equities index advanced by 0.5% on Thursday, recovering after slumping during the previous session to its lowest since early January. Among the major movers was South Korea, which gained 0.8% as the country’s central bank held interest rates steady after hinting that its interest rate hikes were coming to an end.
While relatively unchanged at 18.878 against the dollar, the Turkish lira continued to hover near its record low as investors awaited news on the central bank’s interest rate decision. Even before the country’s earthquake crisis, the government had pushed for the lowering of interest rates.
Other movers include the South African rand, which dipped 0.6% after the finance minister’s budget speech, and the Russian rouble, which gained 0.6%.