20.03.2023 01:16 PM
Premarket trading on March 20. US stock indices resume upward movement

Futures on US stock indices rose by midday after a big morning sell-off. Government bonds also advanced as investors flocked back to safe-haven assets after assessing the actions of the government to ensure stability in the banking sector.

Futures contracts for the S&P 500 appreciated by 0.3%. The heavy-tech NASDAQ gained 0.4%. Major lenders such as JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp., Wells Fargo & Co., and Citigroup Inc. shares recovered after falling in the premarket.

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The European Stoxx Europe 600 index also grew while shares of banks and financial services companies remained in the red. UBS stock declined by 16% and Credit Suisse shares plunged by 60%.

As I have mentioned above, investors are skeptical about the recovery in the banking sector. The problems of Credit Suisse and the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank increased concerns about the stability of the global financial system. The Fed and five other central banks announced a coordinated effort to boost liquidity in US dollar swap arrangements to ease growing strains in the global financial system. Now, traders are curious how the latest events could impact the Fed's monetary policy. Its meeting is scheduled for Wednesday.

If the woes in the banking sector do not escalate, the Fed may stick to monetary tightening. However, the regulator could also abandon an aggressive stance. It will hardly take a pause this month. However, investors have already started pricing in the likelihood of rate cuts. As a result, it boosts bullish sentiment and traders buy assets after a big drop. It appears that nobody expects the Fed to hike the interest rate by 50 basis points. Last week, Chairman Jerome Powell hinted at such a possibility shortly before the headwinds in the US financial sector.

German and UK government bonds scored gains. The yield on 2-year US Treasury notes fell by 11 basis points and the yield on 10-year bonds dropped to September lows. Gold rose above $2,000 an ounce for the first time in more than a year.

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As for the technical outlook of the S&P 500, the pressure on risky assets has decreased. The index may resume an upward movement only if it climbs above $3,923 today. If so, it may grow to $3,952. The bulls also need to push the price above $3,977 and $4,038. It could force the bears to leave the market. In case of a further decline due to the lack of drivers and weak demand, the pair could fall to $3,866 and $3,839.

Jakub Novak,
Analytical expert of InstaForex
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