European stock markets opened lower on Thursday and US futures were pointing to a sell-off on Wall Street today, as investors reacted to the US Federal Reserve’s latest policy statement.
On Wednesday, the Fed kept US interest rates near zero and indicated rates were likely to remain that way until at least 2023. Chairman Jerome Powell said the US economy was recovering faster than expected but the warning was uncertain.
After initially picking up on the policy announcement, US stocks began to fall, as Powell held his press conference. Only the Dow closed in the green and as of Thursday morning, US futures were deeply negative across the board. S&P 500 futures (ES = F) were down 1.6%, Dow Jones futures (YM = F) were down 1.3%, and Nasdaq futures (NQ = F) were off 1.7%.
Read more: The Fed signals interest rates to remain near zero through 2023
Although the Fed did no surprise, analysts said the lack of additional stimulus for the US economy had disappointed investors.
“On paper, it’s all pro-market stuff,” said Connor Campbell, a financial analyst at Spreadex. “Still, although nothing was expected, the lack of fresh incentives has disappointed investors, particularly coming along as it reminds the nation of recovery if Congress does not pass a bipartisan spending plan. Is in danger.”
Campbell said investors had also raised notes of concern [Fed] Statement.”
He said two officials had also voted against Wednesday’s decision, suggesting a brewery in the Doom-filled FOMC in the bazaars.
Independent macro strategist, Viraj Patel, said: “There is a feeling that the Fed has now thrown everyone into the kitchen sink and will sit on the sidelines for the time being.”
Risk-off sentiment spread to Europe, where major stock markets opened in the red.
Britain’s FTSE 100 (^ FTSE), Germany’s DAX (^ GDAXI), and France’s CAC 40 (^ FCHI) all fell more than 1% in early trade.
The European Automobile Manufacturers Association said there was pressure on auto shares in the European Union after an 18.9% decline in new car sales in August.
Renault (RNO.PA) fell 1.1%, Volkswagen (VOW3.DE) stock fell 0.8%, and Merdez Benz-owner Daimler (DAI.DE) shed half a percent.
Read more: Bank of England to catch fire on policy despite increasing pressure
Asian stocks were sold overnight, though not as fast. Nikkei (^ N225) of Japan fell 0.6% and KOSPI (^ KOSPI) in South Korea fell 1.2%. In China, Shanghai Composite (000001.SS) fell 0.4% and Schengen Component (399001.SZ) was flat. Hong Kong Hang Seng (^ HSI) dropped 1.7%.
Later today attention will turn to the Bank of England, which publishes its latest monetary policy statement in London in the afternoon. The central bank is expected to keep the interest rate below 0.1% and maintain the bond buying program at £ 745bn.