LONDON (Reuters) – The dollar hit a 14-year high against a basket of currencies on Wednesday as a post-U.S. election sell-off resumed across global bond markets, lifting Treasury yields and attracting investors to the U.S. currency.
That halted stocks in their tracks, with Europe’s main indices down as much as 0.8 percent and Wall Street expected to open 0.5 percent lower.
The Bank for International Settlements this week repeated its view that a stronger dollar poses risks for global markets and financial stability. Investors have largely shrugged off these warnings but stocks felt the heat of the dollar’s latest rise on Wednesday.
“I agree with the consensus interpretation of the key macro trades – higher yields and a stronger dollar – but I’m less persuaded by the expectation of higher global equities,” Stephen Jen of hedge fund Eurizon SLJ Capital said on Wednesday.
“The world’s interest rates have been dragged higher by the U.S. yield curve, creating the risk that interest rates may be too high for the still-fragile economies in Europe and emerging markets,” he said.
U.S. President-elect Trump’s plans to cut taxes and boost infrastructure spending would boost economic activity while his proposals to deport illegal immigrants and impose tariffs on cheap imports are seen driving inflation higher.