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Wall Street futures pointed to a lower open as Trump failure sparks risk-off trade

Wall Street stock futures pointed to a lower open on Monday as investors fretted that U.S. Trump’s failure to gather enough support to repeal and replace health care was an indicator of troubles he may have in the future with other promised fiscal policies, such as tax reform or infrastructure spending.

The blue-chip Dow futures fell 129 points, or 0.63%, by 6:57AM ET (10:57GMT), the S&P 500 futures lost 19 points, or 0.80%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures traded down 37 points, or 0.69%.

 

RISK OFF TRADE ENVIRONMENT

In the risk-off trade environment,  the Japanese yen and precious metals are in demand, as the U.S. dollar took a hit.

The dollar against a basket of currencies on Monday after Trump’s failure to push through a healthcare reform bill prompted investors to question the extent to which he can deliver on growth policies that have been priced in since his election.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, was down 0.64% at 98.95 by 6:59AM ET (10:59GMT). It fell to an overnight low of 98.87, a level not seen since November 11.

The index had risen to a 14-year high near 104.00 early in January when expectations for significant stimulus under the Trump presidency were at their peak.

Against the yen, the dollar fell more than 1% to 110.12 at one point, its weakest since November 18. It last traded at 110.34, down around 0.9% for the day (USD/JPY).

Gold prices rallied to a four-week high on Monday, as concern that markets had overpriced the impact of Trump fiscal policies pushed investors toward safe haven assets.

Comex gold futures reached a session peak of $1,259.20 a troy ounce, the highest since February 27. It last traded at $1,256.75, up $8.25, or 0.66%.

Monday’s session lacked any major economic reports stateside, but market players will still gauge the pulse of the Federal Reserve (Fed) in its intentions to gradually remove accommodative policy.

Oil Prices Starting Low On Monday

 

Holding near the weakest level since the end of November as uncertainty over whether an OPEC-led production cut will be extended beyond June fed concerns about a global supply glut.

U.S. crude futures fell 0.75% to $47.61 by 7:01AM ET (11:01GMT), while Brent oil lost 0.51% to $50.66.

Elsewhere, European stocks were under pressure in mid-morning trade, with Germany’s DAX down 1%, while London’s FTSE100 dipped 0.9%.

Earlier, in Asia, markets ended in negative territory, with the Shanghai Composite in China closing down around 0.1%, while Japan’s Nikkei sank 1.5% to its lowest levels since early February.

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