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International Market Update
- European markets closed only slightly higher Thursday as traders continued to assess new data on inflation and economic activity. The pan-European Stoxx 600 was up 0.6% by the close, with construction and materials stocks leading the gains with a 2.1% gain, while oil and gas stocks were down 0.2% on the flip side. The UK’s FTSE 100 was closed on Thursday and Friday for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Queen’s platinum jubilee celebrations closed.
- U.S. stocks rose Thursday after a rally the previous day as the three major indexes each ended their two-day losing streaks. Fed Vice Chairwoman Lael Brainard said Thursday that the central bank is unlikely to take a break from its current rate-hiking cycle anytime soon. Elsewhere, Microsoft warned that revenue and profit this quarter would fall short of analysts’ estimates. The stock initially dipped, but recovered the losses to close with a 0.8% gain for the day. Other technology stocks rose, giving a boost to the Nasdaq. Nvidia was up 6.9%. Zoom rose 4.3%, and Tesla gained nearly 4.7%.
- Stocks in the Asia-Pacific region rose this morning after gaining overnight on Wall Street. Investors are also looking ahead to the release of U.S. labour market data for May. In Japan, the Nikkei 225 gained 0.96% as shares of Fast Retailing rose nearly 6%. South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.26% higher, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.72%. Markets in mainland China, Hong Kong and
Taiwan are closed on Friday for a public holiday.
In International News
Lululemon raises forecast as customers continue to spend despite higher prices
Lululemon’s customers have so far not shied away from higher prices for leggings and sports bras, Chief Executive Officer Calvin McDonald said Thursday. The sportswear maker reported fiscal first-quarter profit and revenue that beat Wall Street expectations, driven by double-digit growth in its online operations and the retailer’s nascent men’s department. Lululemon also raised its fiscal 2022 financial guidance and expects the business’ momentum to continue despite overall economic headwinds, including high inflation and a disrupted supply chain. Lululemon sees fiscal 2022 revenue in the range of $7.61 billion to $7.71 billion, up from a previous forecast of $7.49 billion to $7.62 billion.
RBA to raise rates by modest 25 basis points in June, some call for 40 basis points – Reuters poll
The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will raise interest rates by a modest 25 basis points in June for the second straight month, a slower pace than most of its peers, to curb rising inflation, according to a Reuters poll of economists. With the economy recovering well from the pandemic and inflation at a 20-year high of 5.1%, well above the 2% to 3% target range, the Reserve Bank of Australia only recently changed its mind about the need to raise interest rates. The median forecast in the May 26-June 2 Reuters poll of 35 economists showed that the RBA will raise its policy rate by another 25 basis points from the current 0.35% to 0.60% at its June 7 meeting.