Daily Market Color

Slight Flight to Quality in Cautious Trading After Brussels Terrorist Attacks

Global equity markets declined while Treasuries rallied marginally as investors remained cautious following this morning’s terrorist attacks in Brussels.  The attacks involved bombings at both the Belgian airport and a downtown subway station close to the EU headquarters.  Over 30 people were killed and ISIS has already claimed responsibility, adding to security concerns in Europe as countries deal with an influx of Syrian refugees.  Travel sector stocks slumped and the British pound declined against all major peers amid speculation the attacks may boost the case for Britain to leave the EU when it holds a referendum this June.  British citizens are already concerned with the EU’s open border policy and an event like the attacks today appears to increase the risk of a “Brexit”.

The data calendar in the US is quiet again today, so investors are likely to continue to focus on Brussels headlines and Fedspeak.  Chicago Fed President Evans (dove, non-voter) is scheduled to speak this afternoon and Philadelphia Fed President Harker (non-voter) after the close.  Data picks back up tomorrow, headlined by the February new home sales report.

All three major US stock indexes are trading flat from yesterday’s close, Treasury yields and swap rates are 1-2 bps lower across the curve, and gold is 0.50% higher.

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