AFP: Most Asian markets bounced from two days of losses on Wednesday as traders tracked a Wall Street surge fuelled by data pointing to slowing US inflation and hopes the Federal Reserve’s rate hike drive is coming to an end.The gains will provide some relief to investors after January’s rally appeared to have hit the buffers this week on lingering concerns about the economic outlook.
Focus is firmly on the US central bank’s policy decision later in the day, which will be followed for an idea about its plans for interest rates over the next few months in light of the less painful price environment.
Of particular interest will be bank boss Jerome Powell’s post-meeting comments as he and most other officials have consistently pushed back against market talk of a change of course from the policy board.
Expectations the Fed will hike borrowing costs just 25 basis points on Wednesday were ramped up after a key gauge of wage increases came in below forecasts.”The employment cost index (ECI) is closely watched by the Fed as it compositionally adjusts wages growth, unlike other more timely measures,” said National Australia Bank’s Tapas Strickland.
Nayeemul Islam khan
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