Global stocks dipped on Thursday morning as observers braced themselves for the European Central Bank’s (ECB) interest rate decision due later in the day. The ECB is expected to hike rates further to a two-decade high of 3.5%.
Both the U.S. and German 2-year bond yields were pushed higher, reaching 4.8% and 3.1% respectively. This is both yields’ highest levels since March.
Equities were also hampered, with blue chip stocks listed in London, Paris, and Frankfurt dipping by an average of 0.2%. In contrast, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 0.7%; a two-month high.
In Asia, the Bank of Japan (BoJ) seems set to stick with its loose monetary policy when it reconvenes on Friday. The yen slumped to a six-month low on Thursday, dropping 1% to 141.50 per dollar.
“Dollar-yen is at year highs and markets are increasingly beginning to talk about whether a further rise could trigger the BoJ to verbally and also effectually intervene in the FX market,” Danske Bank’s head of FX research Kristoffer Kjær Lomholt remarked.
Brent oil remained steady at $73.29 per barrel, while gold slipped to a two-week low of $1,934 an ounce. The dollar rose slightly from its four-week low against a basket of other major world currencies.