September 21, 2023

Taylor Daily Press

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US inflation rate takes center stage in stock markets

US inflation rate takes center stage in stock markets

Economists expect US inflation to rise to 3.6 percent in August from 3.2 percent in July. So-called core inflation, which excludes highly volatile prices for energy and food, probably cooled to 4.3 percent from 4.7 percent a month ago.

We also look forward to the European Central Bank’s (ECB) interest rate decision scheduled for Thursday. The ECB has already raised interest rates nine times in a row to tackle inflation in the euro area. However, it is still unclear whether interest rates will be hiked for the tenth time. Several national central bank governors have recently spoken for and against interest rate hikes.

Not impressed

The AEX index on Damrak looks set to start a new trading day. Other European stock markets are also expected to open with losses. Asian stocks fell on Wednesday following a lower close on Wall Street. In Tokyo, the Nikkei fell 0.2 percent, and in Hong Kong, the Hong Kong index fell 0.1 percent.

Apple’s European suppliers may be in the spotlight after the US tech group’s share price plunge. Apple unveiled the new iPhone 15 and updated versions of the Apple Watch at its annual event on Tuesday. Investors were unimpressed by the new products and sent shares down 1.8 percent.

Monitored temporarily

In London, the focus is on BP. British Oil and Gas Group CEO Bernard Looney has resigned with immediate effect over past relationships with colleagues. He has been at the helm of BP since early 2020. Looney will be replaced on an interim basis by finance director Murray Auchincloss.

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The euro was at $1.0740, down from $1.0727 the previous day. U.S. oil was up 0.3 percent at $89.14 a barrel. Brent crude was up 0.2 percent at $92.27 a barrel.