Sat. Dec 9th, 2023
    Stocks Hold Steady in Pre-Thanksgiving Trading, Dollar Weakens

    Stocks showed little movement on Monday as thin trading and the upcoming U.S. Thanksgiving holiday restricted market activity. Additionally, the absence of major data releases also contributed to the lack of direction in the markets. Meanwhile, the U.S. dollar slipped against major currencies.

    European shares were broadly flat, with the STOXX index down just 0.04%, while U.S. futures were expected to follow suit. Early trading in European shares was mixed, with the FTSE 100 down 0.25%, the DAX slipping 0.09%, and the CAC 40 up 0.22%.

    The dollar index reached its weakest level since September, hitting 103.53, as investors increasingly bet that U.S. interest rates have peaked and that the Federal Reserve may start cutting rates in the coming year.

    In Asia, stock markets were more active. Japanese shares, boosted by strong earnings and offshore demand, hit highs not seen since 1990, leading to a three-week winning streak. Although the Nikkei encountered profit taking and closed at 33,388.03, it still recorded an 8.2% gain for the month so far. Asia-Pacific shares outside of Japan also advanced, with MSCI’s index climbing 0.8% after a 2.8% increase last week. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 1.8% to 17,778.07.

    Looking ahead, the upcoming Black Friday sales will be closely watched as they test the pulse of the consumer-driven U.S. economy. However, the Thanksgiving holiday is expected to keep trading volumes low.


    Q: What were the major movements in the stock market on Monday?
    A: The stock market was generally flat on Monday, with European shares almost unchanged and U.S. futures expected to follow suit.

    Q: Why did the U.S. dollar weaken?
    A: The U.S. dollar weakened against major currencies as investors bet that U.S. interest rates have reached their peak and the Federal Reserve could start cutting rates next year.

    Q: How did Asian stock markets perform?
    A: Japanese shares hit highs not seen since 1990, driven by strong earnings and offshore demand. The Nikkei closed at 33,388.03, up 8.2% for the month so far. Asia-Pacific shares outside of Japan also gained 0.8%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index advanced 1.8%.

    Q: What are the key upcoming events in the market?
    A: The Black Friday sales will test the consumer-driven U.S. economy. Additionally, the flow of U.S. economic data will be limited, but minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last meeting will offer insights into policy makers’ thinking.