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Traders focus on J&J vaccine news

FDA and CDC call for a pause of J&J vaccine

The CDC and the FDA have called for a pause in the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine on Tuesday, sending the stock down 2.41% due to issues with blood clotting, much like we have seen with the AstraZeneca vaccination. This, of course, had a knock-on effect in the markets, as the Dow Jones got absolutely hammered during premarket futures trading.

That being said, there are several news conferences coming up over the next 24 hours that could give a little bit of a roadmap as to what happens next. White House officials claim that the pause in J&J vaccinations will not hamper the overall timeline of the vaccination rollout in the United States, as there are other alternatives, and the United States is still far ahead of other countries around the world.

Robust Chinese data pushes oil higher

Oil rose on Tuesday after the strong import numbers came out of China, but markets essentially shrugged off the idea of Middle East tensions, which so far have not disrupted any oil supply. Brent crude oil markets were up 1% by midday in London, while US crude oil futures were up about the same.

Chinese exports grew at a robust pace in March, which is also another boost to the nation’s recovery as global demand picks up. As COVID vaccinations get into the arms of people around the world, that should also drive up demand for Chinese goods, which also puts upward pressure on oil demand. Furthermore, there is a bit of a lag time coming out of the United States when it comes to starting the flow of crude oil backup after recent disruptions, so there is still a so-called “Goldilocks period” for the market going forward. Make sure to pay close attention to the US dollar as well, because this all could also have an effect on that market.

US consumer prices rise most since 2012

The United States Consumer Price Index climbed in March by the most since 2012, showing that there are still inflationary pressures regarding the reopening economy in the United States. The CPI increased 0.6% from the prior month, after a 0.4% gain in February, according to the Labour Department. The overall median estimate of analysts globally was for a gain of 0.5%.

The year-over-year changes are distorted by the pandemic, so the CPI is going to be a bit misleading, and as a result, the yearly figures were widely ignored by Wall Street. Treasury markets did gain just a bit, but this was also based upon the idea of the Johnson & Johnson vaccination being halted more than anything else.

This past weekend, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that they are willing to let the economy “run hot” for a while, so it is worth noting that these numbers, although much stronger, are not enough to have people concerned about the Federal Reserve stepping in and slowing down the economy anytime soon.

Stocks

Stock markets were very noisy during the trading session on Tuesday, as the S&P 500 was essentially unchanged midday. The NASDAQ 100 has gotten a bit of a boost by lower interest rates, gaining 77 basis points, while the DAX in Germany was up 29. The Nikkei 225 was up almost ¾ of a per cent, as all major indices that we follow were positive, but the choppiness during the session made for difficult trading.

Index Change
S&P 500

S&P 500

0.07

NASDAQ 100

NASDAQ 100

0.77

DAX 30

DAX 30

0.29

Nikkei 225

Nikkei 225

0.72

Forex Pairs

Currency markets were also choppy as the world awaited the CPI figures coming out of the United States. The Euro was up 14 basis points, the British pound essentially unchanged, while the US dollar was down 12 basis points against the Japanese yen, albeit from extreme highs. The Australian dollar was quiet yet again during the trading session on Tuesday, as we remain in a very tight consolidation range.

Index Change
EUR/USD

EUR/USD

0.1403

GBP/USD

GBP/USD

-0.01

USD/JPY

USD/JPY

-0.1211

AUD/USD

AUD/USD

0.02

Commodities

Commodity markets were positive on the whole, as perhaps people are looking towards the reopening trade more than anything else. Gold got a slight boost from yields dropping in America, gaining 6/10 of a per cent, while silver was up 2%. Crude oil markets were also positive, gaining 77 basis points in a generally positive tone most of the session. Natural gas was the outlier, gaining 2.34% by midday on colder weather in the United States of the last several sessions.

Index Change
Gold

Gold

0.61

Silver

Silver

2.10

Crude Oil

Crude Oil

0.77

Natural Gas

2.34

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