US stock indexes have little changed yesterday. Negative for the market was corporate reports of companies Johnson & Johnson and Morgan Stanley. Investors also were upset by statistics on an index of business activity in the US housing market, which was down to 57 that is 1 worse than the previous indicator. Today, the focus will be on the data on the number of housing starts and the number of building permits in the United States (13:30 GMT). Traders wait for tomorrow's ECB decision to start a program of quantitative easing in the euro area, which should support the growth of stock indexes in the world. Our medium-term outlook for the US stock market remains negative, but may be revised in the near future.
European stocks yesterday showed growth, but now investors are in no hurry to accumulate positions. The reason for optimism were the data on the index of business sentiment in the euro area, which rose to 45.2 in January against 31.8 in December. Today in Europe, the central event was the publication of data on unemployment in the UK, which fell in November to 5.8% that is 0.2% better than the previous figure. The number of unemployed fell by 29.7 thousand. In addition, all nine members of the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of England supported the preservation of the current settings of monetary policy. We forecast that the ECB will announce tomorrow the launch of a full-scale quantitative easing program of around 500 billion euros, which will be a stimulus for the growth of European stock markets.
Markets in the Asia-Pacific region continues to grow except for the Japanese market, which fell today after the statement of the Bank of Japan on reducing inflation forecast to 1.0%, which is 2 times lower than the previous guideline. At the same time, the parameters of the monetary policy of the country remained unchanged. The Chinese market continues to recover after the sharp fall against the background of tightening for margin transactions. The growth of index of consumer confidence in Australia by 2.4% in January, against a decline of 5.7% in December, supported the investors. We forecast a decline of stock markets in the region in the medium term, but in the near future, the growth may continue.