The stock markets ended the last quarter firmly in the red after major losses due to the coronavirus pandemic. And the futures are starting the new quarter with more declines. Analysts are now busy updating earnings forecasts, but they fear that the investors may initiate a fresh wave of selling. That, on the other hand, will cause further losses.
U.S. futures fell along with the European and Asian stocks. Chris Weston, Pepperstone Financial’s Head of Research, thinks that the earnings season will trigger a decline in the consensus of S&P 500 profit expectations, as they are far too high compared to the current situation.
He also stated that the markets are looking at global stocks in a new light, one with no dividends and no buyback support. However, while Europe and the U.S. are struggling in the face of the recession, China’s reading surged back into growth territory.
What’s happening now in the markets?
The stock markets continue to fall worldwide while the coronavirus spreads rapidly. American shares collapsed after the infection cases grew in the U.S. However, the U.S. dollar climbed with Treasuries.
The U.S. is straggling to get the outbreak under control, but New York City’s death toll is already topping 1,000. Standard Chartered Plc, HSBC Holdings Plc, and other lenders halted dividends and share buybacks, causing the decline in the Stoxx Europe 600 Index.
The S&P 500 Index also dropped down as much as 3.6% after President Donald Trump warned about a “painful” two weeks to overcome. Meanwhile, the euro fell as manufacturing data from the single-currency region showed a contraction.
In Asia, Hong Kong shares tumbled down, and stocks hit session lows in Japan during the final hour of trading, closing down nearly 4%.
However, Chinese equities outperformed due to a recent rebound. The private reading on the country’s manufacturing sector beat analysts’ expectations. Bob Parker, Quilvest Wealth Management’s investment committee member, stated that China’s economic data is starting to improve in March.