Asian Stocks Surge As Investors Await Powell's Rates Cut Remarks

25 basis point cut priced in. Will he go further

World FX rates in 2019 http://tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh * Fed's Powell says trade, global concerns weigh on USA economy * Dollar hits session low vs yen, euro after Powell remarks * Markets expect 25 basis-point cut later this month (Adds analyst comments, updates prices) By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss NEW YORK, July 10 (Reuters) - The dollar fell on Wednesday after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell struck a downbeat tone in congressional testimony, saying trade uncertainties and concerns about the global outlook continued to exert pressure on the US economy.

The pan-European STOXX 600 climbed 0.2% after losing 1.4% over the past four sessions. Financial and technology shares led gainers in the the S&P, while real estate and communications lagged.

Early on Tuesday, Powell delivered the opening remarks at a Boston Fed conference but, as anticipated, made no references to monetary policy ahead of the semi-annual testimony to the House Financial Services Committee. "The ECB and the Fed are the two most systemically important central banks in the world".

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.1% after an 0.3% decline Wednesday.The euro climbed 0.1% to $1.1261.The British pound rose 0.1% to $1.2509.The Japanese yen added 0.3% to 108.13 per dollar.The offshore yuan was flat at 6.8742.

The S&P 500 Index rose 0.2% to close at a record high as of 4:01 p.m. Earlier, the S&P 500 briefly topped 3,000 for the first time after Powell signaled a willingness to lower rates, citing a slowing global economy and trade issues.

Nonetheless, many questioned how much momentum the prospect of lower interest rates could provide. Yet, this only worked to diminish bets of a 50bps rate cut from the Fed at this month's interest rate decision.

'The focus going forward is U.S. data, such as tonight's CPI, and whether the economy warrants a 50 basis point rate cut this month'.

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According to CME Group's FedWatch tool, the chance of a 50 basis point cut rose to around 1 in 4 now from near-zero ahead of Tuesday for the Fed's next policy meeting on July 30-31.

The chance of a 50 bps cut rose to 27.6% from 3.3% on Tuesday, according to CME Group's FedWatch tool. Minutes from the Fed's June meeting confirmed an inclination among officials to ease policy soon.

The greenback index versus a basket of six main currencies was little modified at 97.374. It was still some distance away from a six-month trough of 106.780 set on June 25. Two-year yields dropped two basis points to 1.81% in Asian trading after sliding eight basis points on Wednesday.

Data on Thursday showed annual inflation in the euro zone's biggest economy accelerated in June, but remained below the ECB's target.

In commodities, USA crude oil futures climbed to a six-week high as oil rigs in the Gulf of Mexico were evacuated before a storm, while an incident with a British tanker in the Middle East highlighted ongoing tensions in the region.

Brent crude futures LCOc1 were up $1.92, or 3%, to $66.08 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures CLc1 climbed $1.75, also 3%, to $59.58 a barrel.

London's FTSE edged up 0.2 per cent and Paris also rose after better-than-expected French industrial data.

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