In European Equity Markets stocks fell on Tuesday as stocks in big international drugmakers were hit after U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted about lowering drug prices. The STOXX 600 fell 0.3 percent, setting its fourth straight session of losses. The region’s healthcare index was the top drag to the STOXX, down 1 percent, after Trump said he was working on a new system to increase competition and bring down drugs prices. Sector heavyweights such as Novartis, Roche, Shire and Sanofi all fell between 0.8 and 2.3 percent. French retailer Casino Guichard and bookmaker Paddy Power Betfair both fell more than 5 percent following poor earnings updates.
In Currency Markets the dollar pushed higher against a basket of the other major currencies on Tuesday, but remained below recent highs amid elevated expectations that the Fed will hike interest rates at its meeting next week. Against the yen, the dollar was up 0.12 percent to 114.02 yen. The euro fell to 1.0573, off Monday’s two-week highs of 1.0639. Sterling was down 0.38 percent to $1.2190 after weak consumer spending data underlined concerns that the economy is faltering as it prepares to exit the EU. The Australian dollar was higher after the country’s central bank kept interest rates on hold on Tuesday and gave no indications that it is considering further easing. Aussie was up 0.17 percent to $0.7593 after initially rising as high of $0.7633.
In Commodities Markets oil prices were little changed on Tuesday, giving up gains after Saudi Arabia’s oil minister gave mixed messages on future OPEC production cuts, while the market also braced for data that was expected to show a ninth straight weekly increase in U.S. crude inventories. Brent futures remained unchanged at $56.01 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was up 0.2 percent. Spot gold was down 0.7 percent at $1,216.95 an ounce, having earlier touched its lowest since Feb. 3 at $1,216.19 an ounce. Silver was down 1.7 percent at $17.48 an ounce. Platinum was down 1.6 percent at $959.50, after earlier hitting $957, its lowest since Jan. 20. Palladium was 0.5 percent lower at $764.72.
In US Equity Markets stocks pared losses late Tuesday morning as a decline in drug stocks, triggered by President Donald Trump’s tweet about lowering drug prices, was countered by gains in technology stocks. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.02 percent, at 20,951.16, the S&P 500 was down 0.11 percent, at 2,372.71 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.08 percent, at 5,854.10. Johnson & Johnson was the top drag on the S&P 500 and the Dow, while Amgen weighed the most on the Nasdaq. Nimble Storage rose 45 percent after Hewlett Packard Co said it would buy the data storage provider for $1.09 billion in cash. Dish Network was up 4.4 percent after the satellite TV company was picked to join the S&P 500.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields rose on Tuesday, with the 30-year yield at its highest in over a month as investors made room for this week’s supply of coupon-bearing government debt, led by $24 billion worth of three-year notes. The yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes was up 2 basis points at 2.511 percent, while the 30-year yield was up nearly 2 basis points at 3.116 percent after touching its highest level since Feb. 3, Reuters data showed.