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 globalization and further fuel higher structural inflation. 

US equities fell deep into negative territory at market close on Thursday as investors braced for a sizeable increase in consumer prices for the month of May. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.9%, the S&P 500 was down 2.4%, and the Nasdaq Composite was 2.8% lower. All sectors posted losses, led by communication services and technology.  European equity markets also closed sharply lower yesterday, with the benchmark Stoxx 600 index falling 1.4% dragged down by industrial shares, health care and miners after the ECB set the path to start raising borrowing costs next month. 


  • Asian shares tracked Wall Street lower on Friday, weighed down by drops of 1.5% in Hong Kong, 0.8% in resources-heavy Australia and 1.6% in South Korea. 
  • European shares are set to fall again while US stock futures rose slightly this morning. 
  • Oil prices were trading lower this morning but still hovering near three-month highs, with fears over new Covid-19 lockdown measures in Shanghai outweighing solid demand for fuels in the world’s top consumer United States.  
  • The ECB yesterday ended a long-running stimulus scheme and said it would deliver next month its first interest rate rise since 2011, followed by a potentially larger move in September, should the inflation outlook deteriorate.  At the same time, the economic outlook remains subdued as inflation is projected to stay elevated and the economy is seen expanding less. 
  • The European Union’s executive arm is expected to recommend next week that Ukraine be granted candidate status, a key step on the long path to EU membership. 
  • Dutch semiconductor company NXP Semiconductors was yesterday reported to be an acquisition target of Samsung. 
  • Meta Platforms began trading under its new stock ticker META.  A Bloomberg reporter yesterday reported that the company has halted the development of a smartwatch, which had been in the development phase for at least two years and was targeted to launch in 2023. 
  • Ant Group, in which Alibaba owns a controlling stake, said this morning that it had no plan to initiate an initial public offering.  This was a response to media reports that said the China Securities Regulatory Commission had approved relaunching the IPO.