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U.S. markets closed lower on Wednesday after the FOMC statement. Yesterday the Federal Open Market Committee gave a confident outlook on higher inflation and lower unemployment which can be seen as indication that the FED will stick to its plan on hiking interest rates in 2015 for the first time since 2006. The bank will take "international developments" into account when deciding on the exact timing. All members of the FOMC unanimously backed the statement as solid economic growth fuels optimism despite a stronger dollar and declining oil prices. As oil slumped energy shares led indices lower. The DOW JONES index lost -1.13% after declining by -1.65% yesterday, closing at 17,191.37 points. The S&P 500 declined by -1.35% with a final quote of 2,002.16 points - just marginally above the psychologically important level of 2,000 points.
Chinese stock markets traded lower on Thursday after Chinese regulators is launching inspections into brokerages that allow margin trading as concerns rise that markets are becoming over-leveraged. Hong Kong's Hang Seng is trading -1.09% at 24,590.38 points. China's Shanghai Composite closed at 3,263.73 points -1.27%.
Japan's Nikkei posted the biggest drop in 14 days on disappointing corporate earnings data and the FOMC statement after reaching monthly highs in yesterday's trading, closing -1.06% with a final quote of 17,606.22.
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