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6 Jan 2022

Hawkish U.S. Fed Minutes Cause Asian Shares to Plunge

The Index Today

Asian shares faced a dip on Thursday after the U.S. Federal Reserve meeting indicated a possible hastening of the interest rate hikes over looming inflation fears.

The S&P 500 futures plummeted the most since November 26, 2021, while Nasdaq faced its biggest drop by over 3% since February, 2021. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan retreated by 0.95%, and Japan’s Nikkei stock index plunged by 2.08%.

According to Carlos Casanova of Hong Kong’s Union Bancaire Privee, “There is a risk that the Fed might fall into the trap of making policy errors because they do have to perhaps hike interest rates faster than expected, but given the timing of their exit from quantitative easing, it could coincide with a slowdown in the economic cycle and also a decline in inflation on base effects."

Earlier, the Fed had indicated during their December meeting that they may have to implement the proposed interest rate hikes ahead of schedule in 2022, owing to high unemployment rates and persistent inflation.

©Photo: WANG ZHAO/AFP via Getty Images

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