- Most Asian stocks rose on Tuesday as traders examined the impact of the Omicron coronavirus strain and Federal Reserve Chair Powell's statements to measure the variant's policy implications.
- Japanese stocks outperformed and Hong Kong fell, but US and European futures rose. The S&P 500 erased its November losses, and the NASDAQ 100 more than recovered from Friday's rout, on bets that the biggest fears about Omicron are unfounded, despite the fact that much about it remains unknown.
According to Powell, omicron poses hazards to both sides of the central bank's mandate of price stability and maximum employment. That did little to quell concerns that the strain might cause interest-rate hikes to be postponed.
- Treasuries have fallen, although they have kept much of the rise sparked by the virus. Swap markets predict two quarter-point Fed rate hikes in 2022, down from three before the omicron flare-up. The yen and dollar fell, while crude oil rose.
- Australia's third-quarter government investment will reduce GDP by 0.1%.