Global equity markets declined on Thursday as investors weighed on the possibility of a rate hike in the United States sooner than expected, the WSJ reported.

  • Futures on the S&P 500, the Nasdaq 100, and Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped, along with the Stoxx Europe 600, Japan’s Nikkei 225, and South Korea’s Kospi Composite. Slight gains were recorded in the Shanghai Composite and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng.
  • Gold recorded its biggest drop in six months to $1,799.20 a troy ounce, as appetite shifted to yield-bearing investments. The WSJ Dollar Index climbed 0.3%.
  • Federal Reserve officials indicated that the benchmark rate could be hiked to 0.6% by the latter part of 2023. They expected rates to be kept unchanged through the year in March.

Analysts believe the Fed took advantage of the current conditions to signal its readiness to normalize the economic environment.