The global epidemic of new coronavirus was not yet under controlled. Countries have announced state of emergency, implemented measures to limit people’s activities, which is seriously disrupted the demand of energy, overwhelming global stimulus measures. The International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Thursday that due to the epidemic, 3 billion people were “blocked” in the world, and global oil demand may fall by 20%, that is 20 million barrels per day. The IEA called on Saudi Arabia of the OPEC to help on stabilizing the oil market.
The global pandemic remains severe, with a cumulative total of 720000 confirmed cases worldwide. Last week, after experiencing a three-day massive rebound, investors are turning back to watch the situation of the epidemic. It is likely that investors will be more cautious in portfolio management this week.
The cumulative number of confirmed cases of new coronavirus pneumonia in the United States surpassed China and Italy. The market is concerned about the impact of the epidemic on the U.S. economy. Furthermore, the oil market is still gloomy which affect the investment sentiment. There was profit taking pressure in US stocks after the strong rebound in recent days.
The dollar index fell below the 99 mark on Friday in the Asian session, but rebounded back to 99.5 level in the European session, likely to be a technical adjustment after the three consecutive days of decline. As weak fundamentals in oil market, US oil (WTI) is tending to be downward and trading at $23 level. Gold price still fluctuated between $1615-$1625, falling back from the high of $1644.6.
The US Senate has passed the $2 trillion stimulus plans that will be voted by the House of Representatives on Friday morning. However, the news did not provide greater momentum for the markets. The stock market in the Asia-Pacific region was in general weak. The Nikkei retraced significantly, closing down 4.5% to 18664 points.
Although the European Central Bank did not cut the interest rates after the emergency meeting and only launched bond purchasing plan of 750 billion euros, Bloomberg quoted that the meeting had discussed the Outright Monetary Transactions (OMT), which is much more less restrictive, meaning that ECB may pave the way for unlimited debt purchases.
Now, it is worrying that the cumulative number of confirmed cases in the United States exceeded 55000, with a sharp increase of more than 8500 in a single day. The current cumulative number of diagnoses in the United States is the third highest in the world after China and Italy, and is expected to continue to rise in the short term.
On Wednesday (March 25) in the Asian session, the latest news is that the Republican and Democratic parties will agree on the stimulus plan. The White House also confirmed that news, further boosting the market sentiment.
On Tuesday (March 24) major changes happened in the gold market. Due to the epidemic issue, gold mines and refineries around the world have reduced their operations, severely affected the physical supply chain, causing the gold market non function. Banks and brokers were not able to get quotes effectively or fairly.
The Federal Reserve (Fed) announced on Monday an “unlimited” amount of quantitative easing measures and plans to support credit markets to boost the economy, which has been severely damaged by the global pandemic. The Asia-Pacific stock market is doing well today, with the Nikkei rising by more than 1200 points and the Hong Kong HSI currently rising by nearly 1,000 points.