Asia stocks look set to climb at the open after the Federal Reserve upgraded its assessment of the U.S. economy but signaled it wasn’t ready to consider scaling back pandemic support. The dollar retreated with bond yields.
Futures pointed higher in Australia and Hong Kong, while Japan is closed for a holiday. U.S. futures opened higher with Nasdaq 100 contracts outperforming after Apple Inc. crushed revenue estimates and Facebook Inc. reported gains in sales and users. Earlier, all U.S. stock benchmarks ended lower, with the S&P 500 Index failing to hold gains on Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s assertion that asset purchases aren’t about to be trimmed.
Alphabet Inc. rose to a record after its results showed a surge in ad sales. Microsoft Corp. dropped after undershooting the blockbuster figures some analysts had anticipated.
The central bank’s reiteration that inflation pressures are likely “transitory” helped Treasuries rally in U.S. hours and the dollar lagged most major currencies.
Investors seem to be looking for catalysts beyond solid earnings reports to spur the bullish momentum in equities. The Fed offered no fresh cues, though the pledge to keep policy accommodative is helping to buoy markets. The focus now turns to the prospect of more government support as President Joe Biden presents his social-spending plan to Congress.
“The Fed recognized the swift economic recovery continues to raise inflation concerns amongst market participants, but…