Charles-Henry Monchau

Chief Investment Officer




WEEKLY SUMMARY: A tug of war between earnings growth and rates fears

It was another volatile week for risk assets. US large-cap equity indexes ended the week lower with the Nasdaq faring worse. Healthy earnings growth was offset by fears over monetary tightening. Warnings from U.S. officials that a Russian invasion of Ukraine might be imminent may have also contributed to a late-week sell-off. US CPI numbers (reported on Thursday) advanced 7.5% y/y, more than consensus expectations and its highest annual gain since February 1982. The upside CPI surprise, combined with hawkish comments from St. Louis Fed President Bullard, sent short-term rates racing higher on Thursday, resulting in a flattening of the yield curve. The 2-year U.S. yield reached its highest level since January 2020 as investors priced in expectations for an accelerated rate hike scheduled by the Fed. Meanwhile, the 10-year U.S. yield surpassed 2.00% for the first time since the summer of 2019. Shares in Europe rallied (+1.6%), buoyed by strong corporate earnings. Chinese stocks rose amid supportive official comments and a perception that the country’s regulatory crackdown cycle had peaked. Oil and Gold rallied on the back of Russia-Ukraine tensions. Cryptocurrencies were volatile.



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