Asian Markets Slip Back Broadly Despite Stronger US Dollar

The minutes of the Fed's January 30-31 policy meeting, the last with Janet Yellen as chair, said committee members agreed that an improved near-term economic outlook "increased the likelihood that a gradual upward trajectory of the federal funds rate would be appropriate".

NEW YORK, Feb 20 (Reuters) - A six-day rebound in world stocks sputtered on Tuesday, hurt by rising bond yields and disappointing earnings from US retailers, while the USA dollar extended a rebound from three-year lows.

The stronger dollar weighed on commodities, with Brent crude futures losing 0.6 per cent to $US64.88 per barrel and USA crude oil futures slipping 0.7 per cent to $US61.37 per barrel.

The prospect of rising inflation and the Federal Reserve's possible reaction to it is Wall Street's favorite new thing to worry about.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 166.97 points, or 0.67 percent, to 24,797.78, the S&P 500 lost 14.93 points, or 0.55 percent, to 2,701.33 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 16.08 points, or 0.22 percent, to 7,218.23.

Concerns about an expected surge in federal borrowing have escalated after a major tax overhaul late past year that is estimated to add up to $1.5 trillion to government indebtedness.

Syrie: des combattants prorégime entrent dans l'enclave kurde d'Afrine (OSDH)
Ses plans risquent toutefois d'être contrariés par les derniers développements. En réponse, l'armée turque a procédé à des tirs d'avertissement.

The yield on seven-year Treasuries was 2.817 percent on Tuesday, below a near seven-year high set last week, while the five-year Treasury yield reached a near eight-year peak at 2.689 percent.

Indeed ING feels that "inflation expectations have only accounted for around 20 per cent of this year's rise in [US] Treasury yields" and that "the rising term premium has been the biggest factor driving US yields higher in 2018".

The major stock indexes started the day on pace to recoup some of the market's losses from a day earlier as investors sized up the latest crop of company earnings.

Australian stocks were almost flat and South Korea's KOSPI gained 0.55 per cent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 1.2 per cent.

Wellington climbed 1.4 percent and Taipei returned from a week-long Lunar New Year break to jump 2.6 percent.

"What we are seeing is just a little bit of profit-taking (in other currencies), a little bit of bargain-hunting", said Omer Esiner, chief market strategist with Commonwealth Foreign Exchange in Washington. "Investors are banking on much higher returns from equities than bonds again in 2018".

La Bourse de Paris toujours peu inspirée à mi-séance
La circonspection des investisseurs était également à mettre au compte de la publication d'indicateurs PMI décevants en zone euro. Getlink (ex-Eurotunnel) perdait 0,66% à 10,57 euros.

Platinum was about unchanged at $1,000/oz while palladium was down 0.5% to $1,018/oz. Natural gas rose 4 cents to $2.66 per 1,000 cubic feet.

-The Japanese yen sank 0.6 percent to 107.262 per dollar. The euro weakened to $1.2300 from $1.2336.

April gold rose 90 cents to end at USD1,332.10 an ounce. Copper gained 3 cents to $3.22 a pound. Germany's DAX slipped 0.1 percent, while France's CAC 40 rose 0.2 percent and Britain's FTSE 100 added 0.5 percent.

Japan's Nikkei trimmed earlier gains but still ended the day 0.2 per cent higher.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index increased 0.4 percent.

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index gained 0.2 percent to the highest in more than a week.

White House: President Trump open to series of gun control ideas
Hundreds of students were on their way to the state capital to lobby their lawmakers over the national issue, the BBC said. The alleged shooter in Florida does not appear to have used a bump stock during his attack with an AR-15 rifle.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index declined 0.6 percent as of 10:49 a.m. London time. Shares in Southeast Asia were mixed.

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