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Indices:  US markets closed last week with serious sell-offs making investors reconsider their long positions. Indications for a rising inflation caused analysts to forecast an increase of the Fed’s interest rates in move to maintain the pace of growth.

An anticipated change of policy by Fed Chair Janet Yellen led to declines in the leading indices: the S&P500 fell by 2.69%, the Dow lost 2.40%, while the Nasdaq100 ended the period with a 2.65% drop.

European markets did not stay indifferent to the overseas sell-offs and reported their first week of decline for the last month. Germany’s DAX30 lost over 3.6% of its value, France’s CAC40 fell by 2.32%, while Spain’s IBEX and Italy’s S&P/MIB dropped by 4.52% and 4.15%, respectively.

A discouraging financial report by JP Morgan put additional pressure on investors, with European technology stocks being the worst performers, following the trend set by Wall Street.

Forex

The greenback turned out to be the weakest performer on the Forex market last week. The index futures reflecting the dollar’s rate against other major currencies, the DX0614, lost 1.24%, with the EUR/USD, GBP/USD and AUD/USD currency pairs rising 180, 158, and 11 pips, respectively, while the USD/JPY fell by 163 pips.

Commodities

Chart movements on the commodities markets were interesting, with US oil futures increasing by $2,215 for the last five days to close at $103.32 per barrel.

What to expect this week?

Even though it is the week of the Easter holidays, the economic calendar is booming with interesting events which will certainly keep the markets on active mode. The rest of Monday will see the US Retail Sales for March. Tuesday’s highlights will include the Reserve Bank of Australia’s meeting minutes, the UK’s Consumer Price Index for March (MoM and YoY), the Eurozone Trade Balance, the ZEW Survey on the Economic sentiment in Germany and the Eurozone, the US Consumer Price Index for March, Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s speech, New Zealand Consumer Price Index for Q1 (QoQ and YoY).

Wednesday’s main entries will come from China’s GDP for Q1 (QoQ and YoY), Japan’s Industrial Production for March (MoM and YoY), the UK’s Claimant Count rate for February, the Eurozone Consumer Price Index for March (YoY and MoM), the US Industrial Production for March, along with the country’s Building Permits, also for March. Thursday will see BoJ Governor Kuroda’s speech along with the country’s Consumer Confidence Index for March, and also the US Initial Jobless Claims. Friday is expected to be quite calm, since due to Easter holidays, stock markets and banks will be closed in the US, Europe and Australia.

As the US earnings season is gaining momentum, corporate financial results will be published throughout the week, with reports expected by Coca-Cola (KO), Intel (INTC), IBM (IBM), Google (GOOG), Yahoo (YHOO), Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), and Morgan Stanley (MS).

Further reading:  Look out for buy signals from support on the EURUSD