Equity markets fall on concerns about global growth

Updated 18 December 2015

Equity markets fall on concerns about global growth

NEW YORK: Global equity markets fell on Friday, pulled lower by concerns about slumping crude oil prices, while the dollar slipped against the yen on views the Bank of Japan may not ease policy as much as expected.
Investors were cautious in the wake of the euphoria that followed the US Federal Reserve’s first interest rate hike in almost a decade earlier in the week.
The yen gained after the BoJ merely tweaked its monthly asset-purchase program, putting a pause in the dollar’s rise in recent months on views that the Fed’s likely decision to raise interest rates and the BoJ’s path of more potential stimulus would drive investment into higher-yielding US assets.
The Fed raised rates on Wednesday for the first time in almost a decade.
“The BoJ’s move shows a weak hand,” said Jens Nordvig, global head of FX strategy at Nomura in New York.
“It suggests the BoJ is out of ammunition, and will not be able to deliver anything meaningful going forward,” he said.
Equities suffered from fatigue after markets had risen in anticipation of the Fed move, while the price of oil was driving investor sentiment on concerns over global growth and a growing supply surplus.
“We had a couple of strong days as a result of the Fed,” said Andrew Wilkinson, chief market strategist at Interactive Brokers LLC in Greenwich, Connecticut.
“The market is getting sucked into a fear trade,” he said. It’s really oil — is it a glut or a global slowdown? But I don’t think it’s symbolizing a slowdown in the global economy.”
MSCI’s all-country world stock index fell 0.74 percent, while the FTSEurofirst 300 index of leading European share dropped 0.98 percent to 1,420.038.
On Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 186.7 points, or 1.07 percent, to 17,309.14.
The S&P 500 slid 15.45 points, or 0.76 percent, to 2,026.44 and the Nasdaq Composite lost 21.57 points, or 0.43 percent, to 4,980.99.
Treasury prices rose. The benchmark 10-year US Treasury note rose 9/32 in price to yield 2.2058 percent.


Egypt banks step up anti-virus efforts

Updated 26 November 2020

Egypt banks step up anti-virus efforts

  • asures recommended by the Federation of Egyptian Banks also include a ban on face-to-face meetings.

CAIRO: Up to half of bank employees in Egypt will be encouraged to work from home under guidelines to counter a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

Measures recommended by the Federation of Egyptian Banks (FEB) also include a ban on face-to-face meetings.

In a letter to banks, the FEB said its guidelines were aimed at ensuring sustainable operations “in the current circumstances.”

Banks will continue to operate from 8.30 a.m. to 3 p.m. for the public and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for employees.

Previous guidelines were issued by the FEB on March 30 and April 5.

The federation's latest plan includes a follow-up on alternative workplaces to allow departments to continue working in cases of forced interruption.

The plan also issues strict instructions on wearing face masks in the workplace and while using the bank’s buses.

Employees also have been urged to follow precautionary measures while using public or private transport, and to avoid crowded places.

The FEB banned face-to-face meetings, replacing these with video conference meetings, and also underlined instructions to sanitize all surfaces using alcohol-based sanitizers, to regularly sanitize all workplaces at weekends, to provide sanitizers in areas that host employees and clients, and to regularly sanitize all main elevators.

Office boys and janitors have been instructed to wear face masks and to use paper cups instead of glass or metal ones.

The FEB said it will continue to post awareness videos and statements on combating the coronavirus.

It has urged banks to use e-payments, to continue banning delivery persons from entering the workplace, to continue halting the delivery of daily newspapers and magazines, and to continue temperature testing by security officials at workplace entrances.