Mexico's central bank is considering decoupling from the U.S. Federal Reserve's monetary policy, while the Bank of Canada said it would likely hold off on further increases for now. The Bank of England and European Central Bank have meetings due next week, and the Bank of Japan is divided on a 2% inflation target. All of these events have the potential to shape the global market outlook.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was flat, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite were down slightly. Microsoft Corporation beat on the top line but flagged slower cloud growth, while Alphabet Inc. added to its losses from a day earlier due to the DOJ opening a new antitrust case. U.S. Bancorp and Tesla Inc. surged on better-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings, and AT&T Inc. beat on the bottom line. Rupert Murdoch withdrew his proposal to merge Fox Corp. and News Corp., sending shares higher.
The spot gold price has risen by 0.2% to $1,940.49 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures have risen by 0.4% to $1,942.6. Global economic growth is forecast to barely move above 2% this year. Central banks are expected to hold interest rates steady through the end of this year, with the ECB and Fed likely to raise rates and the Bank of England expected to hike its bank rate on Feb. 2.
Brent crude futures dipped 19 cents to $86.24 per barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 19 cents to $80.41. Crude inventories edged higher by 533,000 barrels to 448.5 million barrels. Global economic growth is forecast to barely move above 2% this year, and OPEC+ is likely to endorse current output levels at their Feb. 1 meeting.
The U.S. dollar index was last at 101.64, near last week's 8-month low of 101.297. Subsequent rate hikes from the Federal Reserve, the Bank of England, and the European Central Bank are expected. The euro rose 0.27% to $1.0912, the Canadian dollar last traded at 1.3384 per dollar, the Australian dollar blunted 0.81% lower to $1.4048, and the Japanese yen dived 0.45% to 129.38 per dollar.