The war in Ukraine has tended to increase uncertainty regarding inflation and growth prospects.  When and with what consequences this war will end is pure speculation, but capital markets are expected to build a certain immunity to the headline risks in the coming weeks.  The medium- to long-term consequences, on the other hand, could be significant.  It is possible that we are at the beginning of a new bloc formation or a new Cold War.  This would put a significant damper on globalisation and further fuel higher structural inflation. 

US equity benchmarks closed mixed as quarterly results from Netflix weighed on the broader markets, while government bond yields fell on Wednesday.  The S&P 500 was little changed, the Nasdaq Composite decline 1.2% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.7%.  European markets had a strong mid-week session with the regional Stoxx 600 index adding 0.9% as optimism over upbeat corporate earnings offset concerns over inflation and economic growth. 


  • Mainland China and Hong Kong stocks fell on Thursday, hurt by worries about the Chinese economy, but an overnight tumble in longer dated US treasury yields lent support to other benchmark indices.   
  • European stocks are expected to open higher this morning following the lead from US stock futures. 
  • Oil prices traded higher but in a narrow range on Thursday, after being rocked earlier in the week by supply losses from Libya and a worrying outlook for demand as the IMF cut its global growth forecasts. 
  • ASML announced first-quarter sales hit the €3.5 billion mark, and income stood at €0.695 billion, both beating market expectations, whilst leaving its full-year guidance unchanged and forecasting up to €5.3 billion in Q2 sales. 
  • Tesla reported better-than-expected Q1 results, buoyed by strong demand for its electric vehicles, with Elon Musk predicting output will grow at a fast clip for the rest of the year despite supply-chain challenges.  Musk said Tesla should be able to make up for any production shortfalls in the first half of the year from coronavirus-related shutdowns at ts factory in Shanghai, and is on track to expand production to more than 1.5 million vehicles this year.   
  • United Airlines reported Wednesday that it lost $1.38 billion in Q1 2022 but said it expects to return to profitability in the current three-month period as post-pandemic travel ramps up.  Shares in UAL jumped almost 8% in after-hours trading following the earnings report.