Equities post strong week of gains on central bank support

Global equity indices across Asia, Europe and the US saw substantial gains this week as investors opted to shrug off the largely tepid macroeconomic data releases over the past few days. Details gleaned from the FOMC meeting minutes released earlier this week as well as the commitment of continued easing from Bank of Japan officials assuaged market participants as the accommodating monetary environment saw steady inflows into equity indices and the dollar. Chinese stocks indices led the charge in Asia with the Shanghai Composite and the CSI 300 gaining over 8% each this week as the prospects of additional stimulus from the PBOC encouraged strong buying throughout the entire week.

Eurozone indices have struggled to match this impressive performance, with indices across the region weighed down by Greek debt concerns, however, tentative progress between Greece and its lenders propelled the DAX to its best week since the beginning of January, adding as much as 3% this week. The prospect of a potential conclusion towards the end of May or early June, after what has been a drawn out and difficult period of negotiations saw the euro rally towards 1.1208 earlier today, however, with no concrete details regarding the revised terms of any deal these early gains were swiftly given back as the single currency traded towards 1.1020 against the dollar during the afternoon hours. Vocal support for Greece to remain in the euro has increased over the past few weeks as officials attempt to calm the recent market volatility that has seen the single currency rally as much as 8% against the dollar over the past four weeks. With observers hopeful of a resolution in the coming weeks we could see further gains in the euro against the dollar as confidence in the region returns.

Shanghai Composite posts substantial gains this week on expected PBOC support

SHCOMP Index Shanghai Stock Exc 2015 05 22 13 30 38

EUR gives up early gains on Greek concerns

EUR Curncy Euro Spot 2015 05 22 15 33 35

Topics: US Fed, ECB, EUR, BoJ, Greece
More from: Kash Kamal