Asian Markets Traded Softer; European Markets Open Higher

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The Asian markets finished the day broadly lower as the market participants shied away from putting much risk on the table ahead of the Federal Reserve Chair, Janet Yellen’s speech later today.

March was a smooth ride

Most of the global markets remained resilient in March following a heavy sell-off during the first two months of the year. A number of stimulus measures adopted by the central banks around the globe left a calming effect on market. But, the eyes are set on the way Fed will move ahead with its monetary tightening stance.

A string of positive data in the U.S. has already sparked up the speculations of a potential rate hike in April. However, the gloomy inflation and consumer spending numbers could prevent the Fed to rush into rate hikes this early.

Asia awaits Fed signal

Amidst such curiosities, Australia ASX All Ordinaries fell 1.46% to 5,076.20 while Shanghai SE Composite Index slipped 1.28% to 2,919.83. A series of mixed economic data led Japan’s Nikkei 225 down by 0.18% to 17,103.53. Taiwan’s TSEC 50 Index closed the day 0.84% lower at 8,617.35. Only Hang Seng and Mumbai Sensex bucked the trend by trading 0.10% and 0.43% higher at 20,366.30 and 25,073.58 respectively.

Meanwhile, the European markets returned to trading after Easter holidays on a positive note. BNP Paribas wrote in a note that the Fed’s monetary outlook might guide the market for the upcoming FOMC meetings. During the early hours, FTSE 100 surged 0.30% to 6,124.79 and Euronext 100 added up 9.34 points to 866.02. CAC 40 and Dax soared 1.10% and 0.64% to 4,377.26 and 9,914.12 respectively. Swiss Market Index inched up 0.12% to 7,784.67 during the opening session.

In the U.S., the equities had eked out gains after the release of the consumer spending and inflation data. Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the day 0.11% higher at 17,535.39 whole S&P 500 Index managed to add just 0.05% to 2,037.05 yesterday.

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