U.S. Equity Markets finished the day higher after a dramatic reversal in the last three hours of trading. The NASDAQ 100 led the gains closing higher by 2.75%. U.S. Federal Reserve Vice Chairwoman Lael Brainard said she believes it would be appropriate for the central bank to hike interest rates by 0.5% during its June and July meetings. However, she noted that it was too soon to say whether the Fed will taper the pace of its rate hikes in the months that follow… Amid recent data showing a softening in the economy, it remains unclear whether inflation has peaked. This may have helped to boost Indexes, as some investors adopted a risk-on sentiment – resulting in many purchasing shares of beaten-down stocks at attractive prices. Within the S&P 500, 10 of the 11 sectors finished higher. European Markets closed mixed. European Central Bank Governing Council Member Edward Scicluna said it is unlikely there is enough support for a 0.5% interest-rate increase at the July meeting. European Central-Bank Governing Council Member Francois Villeroy de Galhau said inflation is too broad and policy must quickly normalize. Growth for the Euro-Zone Producer Price Index in April was weaker than expected, easing versus March due to a slowdown in energy-cost growth. In Asia, Taiwan and the U.S. revealed a blueprint for strengthening trade ties going forward, adding that the two will meet in Washington, D.C. in June – a move that could potentially stoke tensions with China. S&P Global’s South Korean Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (“PMI”) figures for May eased versus April due to output falling into contraction territory. Bank of Japan board member Seiji Adachi said it’s too soon to consider tightening monetary policy, as households are still trying to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. China’s government ordered state-owned banks to establish $120 billion worth of credit lines for infrastructure projects to support domestic economic growth. Elsewhere, Oil rose 1.86% after the Energy Information Administration reported U.S. inventories saw a substantial decline last week, while Gold closed 1.29% higher after the Dollar weakened.
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