Asian stock markets were neutral on Thursday, a day after their worst decline in three months. Investors assessed the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates by a massive 100 basis points the following week. The Japanese yen started to decline once again as well, with just a small support from suggestions that Japanese authorities would intervene in the market. Following the Bank of Japan’s most recent intervention in the foreign exchange markets, the yen declined to 143.55 to the dollar.
The Australian dollar increased to $1.6758 while the euro fell slightly to $0.9965 due to conflicting employment statistics. The Nikkei increased 0.1% while MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific equities outside of Japan increased 0.1%.
FTSE futures strengthened 0.4%, while EUROSTOXX 50 futures climbed 0.1%. Both Nasdaq and S&P 500 futures were almost flat. Treasury prices remained stable in Tokyo trade on Thursday, but the U.S. yield curve is sharply inverted, a symptom of a potential recession, as investors anticipate rate increases through this year and next. Brent crude futures fell 24 cents to $93.86 a barrel on the oil markets. Spot gold decreased 0.4% to $1,689 per ounce after gradually declining as the currency and US rates increased.