For days now stock markets have been watching their forward momentum wind down — what little excitement there was about Greece has now disappeared, and while this is no bad thing for tired journalists and analysts, it does leave European markets looking a little bereft of positive catalysts.
Bigger worries than Greece now concern investors, mainly the US dollar and the next move in gold. The precious metal has managed to rally off multi-year lows, but this is likely to be only a short breathing space before a fresh move lower; faced with the prospect of rising US yields and an eventual rise in US rates, plus a global economy that resolutely refuses to keel over in the similar fashion to 2008, gold looks increasingly likely to take a smaller and smaller part in investor portfolios.
US stocks have seen some selling this afternoon, although the NASDAQ remains fairly resilient ahead of Apple earnings tonight.
Those investors with Dow Jones trackers will be cursing the index’s market-cap weighting system, as falls in heavyweight stocks IBM and United Technologies drag the overall average firmly lower. Another blowout quarter from Apple would be just the ticket to reinvigorate the faded rally in US indices, even if it proves to be a quick bounce before renewed Federal Reserve rate speculation gets underway.