Choppy Start to 2023 For Markets
It’s been a muddy start to the year for equities markets with choppy actions seen across the globe. Early in January we’re seeing some clear divergence between different regions with European stocks currently noting the best performance while US stocks have been wrangled back from initial highs.
Looking at the broader backdrop, one key theme underpinning stocks here is that of ‘peak-inflation’, the idea that the CPI spiral we saw across last year is fading away now. With both the eurozone and the US recording two consecutive monthly declines in inflation, traders have begun anticipating that central banks might pull away from their tightening schedules quicker than expected. In the US, however, this idea was diluted yesterday by comments from Fed’s Bostic and Daly who both called on the need to push ahead with rates, saying that the Fed would likely hike rates above 5%, where they would stay for some time.
In Europe, however, better eurozone data recently, cooling inflation and lower energy prices are contributing to a more encouraging backdrop for investors. The Dax has seen heavy gains this week, rallying more than 6% on the year so far. UK stocks have been a little more mixed while Asian stocks have been boosted by the China reopening story. China relaxed border controls for the first time in 3 years over the weekend. While there are still concerns around soaring covid levels, the longer run view is a return to higher demand and activity which is helping lift stocks currently.
The rally in the DAX this year has seen the index breaking above the 14703.98 level and the 2022 highs, supported by the bullish trend line off 2022 lows. With momentum studies bullish, the focus is on a continued push higher here with 15076.81 the next big level to note for bulls.
The index remains underpinned by the 3814 level for now. Price recently popped above 39210 but has stalled into a test of the bearish channel top. While below here, there is a risk of a further break lower. Any move below the 3814 will open the way for a test of the 3647 level next.
The rally in the FTSE this year has seen price breaking out above the bear channel top while blowing through several key resistance levels. For now, price is stalled around the 7678.8 level and with momentum studies firmly bullish, the focus is on a continuation higher towards 7904.7 while 7575.8 holds as support.
The sell off in the Nikkei has stalled for now into a test of the 25500.5 lows. The subsequent rebound has made it as far as 26246 currently, with these levels marking the bull/bear lines for the current phase of price action. Momentum studies are turning higher here suggesting that might be some room for a further recovery.