LONDON, March 16 The dollar sank to a one-month low, while some surprise hints on the chances of a rise in United Kingdom interest rates drove sterling higher on Thursday as investors digested the fallout of a second rise in USA rates in three months.
With support showing-up around this key level, we may be seeing the rate hike that's largely-expected to take place later today being priced-in. The index was down nearly 1 percent overall for the week and 1.2 percent since the Fed raised rates on Wednesday.
Japan's Nikkei 225 is down 0.2 percent Wednesday while Germany's DAX is 0.1 percent higher.
Biogen was off 2.6 per cent to US$285.13 after Morgan Stanley and Leerink downgraded the drugmaker's stock and cut price targets.
IBM was up 1.2 percent and was the top stock on the Dow. The metal hit its highest since 7 March at $17.56 in the prior session, before easing on profit taking later in the day.
The Fibonacci retracement drawn-around the most recent bullish move could be helpful for determining the next directional bias in Gold as we near this pivotal rate decision from the Fed.
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Across the Atlantic, European stocks rose on Thursday after far-right candidate Geert Wilders was defeated in a closely watched Dutch election, pouring cold water on fears that a populist wave was sweeping the continent.
Yields on 10-year U.S. Treasuries nursed their heaviest falls since last August. After the United Kingdom vote last summer to leave the European Union, investors were anxious about whether a wave of nationalism across the continent could eventually break the European union apart. With a rate increase by the Fed seen as a done deal, investor focus is shifting to what message the central bank will deliver when it concludes its meeting on Wednesday.
"Whether folks agree or disagree with the need to hike, the key here is that the Fed has signaled to markets, and importantly U.S. and global businesses, that it is in control and the economy is moving as expected", said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at AxiTrader, in a note.
While U.S. officials actually raised short-term interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point-to a range between 0.75% and 1%-the decision came as no surprise for investors, on the back of earlier statements and positive economic data.
SPDR Gold Trust GLD, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, said its latest holdings stood at 837.06 tonnes down 2.37 tonnes, from the previous business day.
The S&P 500 was virtually flat at 2,382, as of 10 a.m. If it closes lower Thursday, that would be the eighth decline in the last nine days. The euro rose to $1.0733 from $1.0713, and the British pound rose to $1.2352 from $1.2301.