Major US equity indices ended little changed on Monday but were still solidly up for the month as investors marked time ahead of a slew of quarterly results later this week and the Labour Department’s monthly jobs report Friday. Monday was the lightest day of what’s expected to be the busiest week of the earnings season, with more than 1,400 companies expected to report results. The S&P 500 Index was up 0.2% and 3.1% for the month, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.3% and 3.3% for the month, and the Nasdaq Composite increased by 0.2% and rallied 4% for the month. In Europe, the Euro Stoxx 50 Index ended the day 0.1 % higher and up 1.7% over the whole month of July. 

Summary for 01.08.2023 

  • Most Asian shares rose on Tuesday, buoyed by strength in technology shares as markets awaited major US earnings this week, although Chinese markets lagged on more weak economic signals. 
  • European shares are on track for a steady start as traders assessed some positive signals about the health of the global economy. Meanwhile, US equity futures were little changed early Tuesday morning as investors cautiously awaited a fresh batch of corporate earnings reports. Among the companies slated to report earnings later today include Merch, Pfizer, AMD, Caterpillar, and Uber. 
  • Australia’s central bank this morning held interest rates at 4.1% for a second straight month, saying past increases were working to cool demand, but retained a warning that some more tightening might be needed to curb inflation. 
  • The Caixin China General Manufacturing PMI fell to 49.2 in July 2023 from 50.5 in June, missing market estimates of 50.3 while hitting its lowest reading in six months. It was also the first fall in factory activity since April, as new orders dropped after growing in the prior two months, foreign sales contracted the most since September 2022, and buying levels were down for the first time since January.   
  • The Eurozone economy grew by 0.3% in the second quarter of 2023 after a flat first quarter, slightly surpassing market consensus of a 0.2% expansion, a preliminary estimate showed Monday. The recovery in demand was likely bolstered by a moderation in inflationary pressures. Among the largest economies in the bloc, France and Spain demonstrated sustained growth rates, whereas Germany’s economy stagnated, and Italy unexpectedly experienced a contraction. 
  • The annual inflation rate in the Euro Area slowed for a third consecutive month to 5.3% in July from 5.5% in June, in line with market forecasts, preliminary estimates showed. It is the lowest reading since January 2022. Meanwhile, the core inflation rate was unchanged at 5.5%, compared to forecasts of 5.4%, and is now higher than the headline rate for the first time since 2021. 
  • HSBC Holdings raised its key performance target on Tuesday as its first-half profits surged more than two-fold, supported by rising interest rates around the world and the planned sale of its French unit. The bank also announced fresh buybacks of up to $2 billion, which will start immediately. HSBC raised its near-term return on tangible equity goal to at least mid-teens for 2023 and 2024, from a previous target of at least 12% from 2023 onwards. It reported a return on tangible equity of 9.9% for 2022. 
  • DHL this morning raised its guidance for 2023 despite reporting lower earnings and revenue for the second quarter, hurt by a combination of weaker demand and comparisons with last year’s record results. The company said it now expects EBIT for the full year to be between €6.2 billion and €7.0 billion, in light of what it called a resilient performance in the first half. It had previously guided for EBIT to be in a range of €6 billion to €7 billion.  
  • Adobe shares rose more than 3% yesterday after Morgan Stanley upgraded the share to “overweight” from “equal weight,” citing expectations the software company will benefit from increasing demand for artificial intelligence. 
  • Chevron shares also rose by 3% on Monday after Goldman Sachs upgraded the share to “buy” from “neutral,” forecasting a “clear inflection” in the energy company’s cash flow in 2024.