* U.S. Treasury yields jump to two-week high
* Russia’s rouble gains 0.4% ahead of OFZ auction
* Most central European currencies soften against euro
By Shashank Nayar
April 28 (Reuters) – A jump in U.S. Treasury yields and a firmer dollar kept emerging market currencies in check and stymied developing market stocks on Wednesday as investors awaited a U.S. Federal Reserve meeting.
MSCI’s indexes of emerging currencies and stocks slipped 0.1% ahead of the Fed meeting. Markets are hoping for confirmation that policymakers have no appetite to tinker with support for the economy following a recent run of good U.S. data.
“We expect more of the same from Fed at the upcoming meeting, framing the story of no rate hike until 2024 and that Fed will be patient of inflation overshoots and be behind the curve in terms of tightening policy,” analysts at Maybank wrote in a note to clients.
Meanwhile, U.S. President Joe Biden will also address Congress later in the day and is likely to underscore his administration’s plans for mass infrastructure and stimulus spending.
An improving U.S. economy and expectations for big fiscal spending are causing more investors to question the levels of quantitative easing through bond purchases and how much inflation policymakers would tolerate.
The benchmark U.S. Treasury yield climbed to a two-week high and the dollar index gained 0.2%, leaving limited breathing space for emerging currencies.
South Africa’s rand weakened 0.2% while the Turkish lira climbed 0.4% in a third day of gains, with local bankers crediting locals buying lira for advances in recent days.
Russia’s rouble strengthened 0.4% to trade below 75 to the dollar with steady crude oil futures providing support. The gains came ahead of an OFZ treasury bond auction, which will be keenly watched after U.S. imposed sanctions that will affect foreign buying of Russian debt.
Russia’s return to a neutral monetary policy with its latest increase in interest rates will not hamper economic recovery, Central Bank First Deputy Governor Ksenia Yudayeva said.
Yudayeva added that inflationary expectations in Russia are “very high” and keep rising, explaining the rationale behind the central bank’s decision to hike the benchmark rate to 5% last week.
Most central European currencies also dropped against the euro, with Hungary’s Forint, Polish zloty and the Czech crown falling between 0.5% and 0.2%.
For GRAPHIC on emerging market FX performance in 2021, see http://tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh For GRAPHIC on MSCI emerging index performance in 2021, see https://tmsnrt.rs/2OusNdX
For TOP NEWS across emerging markets
For CENTRAL EUROPE market report, see
For TURKISH market report, see
For RUSSIAN market report, see
(Reporting by Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru, editing by Karin Strohecker and Kim Coghill)
(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2021. Click For Restrictions – https://agency.reuters.com/en/copyright.html