Global Market Review and Outlook

As the first full trading week of the month of April closes, sentiments across markets seem to have dampened. Evidently, the euphoria from global equities market performance in March has been tapered. Market performance this week was shaped by concerns about global growth following comments credited to the IMF Chair, Christine Lagarde, about the likelihood of a reduction in global growth forecast for 2016 and minutes from the last US FED meeting, which pointed out heightened global risks. Also, during the week, the leak of the “Panama Papers” which may not necessarily have a direct impact on markets’ performance, may also be a source of concern as some key political and business individuals are alleged to be on the list. Hence, there could be resultant changes in management as well as political office holders in order to calm rising fears.

Sentiments across the global markets was broadly bearish this week as most of the indices under our coverage trended southwards W-o-W. In the developed markets, the US S & P and NASDAQ depreciated 1.5% and 1.3% W-o-W respectively amidst increasing concerns of a slowing global growth. However, the UK FTSE appreciated 0.6% W-o-W. In the Eurasian markets , following massive sell offs at the start of the week, there was some respite for the European markets around mid-week on account of gains in mining stocks, however, the losses outweighed the gains. Hence, the German DAX and the France CAC lost 1.5% and 0.6% W-o-W.  The Japanese Nikkei declined for the second consecutive week, losing 2.1% W-o-W amidst concerns of a strengthening yen, which is often perceived as negative for exporting Japanese firms, likewise, the Hong Kong Hang Seng fell 0.6% W-o-W.

Across the BRICS markets, the Russia RTS rebounded from a bearish close last week and was the lone gainer, appreciating 2.4% W-o-W as the gains in oil prices this week may have led to the positive close. On the Flipside, the Brazil Ibovespa, was the biggest loser as the index fell 4.1% W-o-W over increasing political concerns about a presidential impeachment. Similarly, the India BSE and South African FTSE followed suit, declining 2.4% and 0.6% W-o-W respectively while the Chinese Shanghai composite closed the week flat.

In the African Market, Sentiments remained negative as all indices, save for the Kenyan NSE (+1.4%), closed in the red. The Nigerian ASI fell 0.7% W-o-W closely trailed by the Egypt EGX (-0.6%) W-o-W and the Ghana GSE (-0.1%) W-o-W.