Kaohoon Morning Brief – 31 January 2022

1) Wall Street closes higher on one of the worst January

Wall Street closed higher on Friday after witnessing one of the worst January amid a selloff from investors over omicron and Fed’s rate hike concerns as well as higher bond yield that reached a two-year high.

The main concern is the Fed’s statement that shows no hesitation to hike its interest rate to curb inflation. Some analysts are now anticipating more than four hikes this year and one could be as much as 0.50% increase.

Dow Jones closed 1.65% higher, S&P jumped 2.43% and Nasdaq soared 3.13%.


2) Oil prices continue to rise amid tight supply

Oil prices rose more than 1% to a 7-year high on Monday amid concerns over tight supply as well as geopolitical tensions in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. The international benchmark Brent crude rose 1.0% to $90.95 a barrel earlier this morning. Meanwhile, U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude increased 1.1% to $87.81 a barrel. Both benchmarks recorded their highest since October 2014 last Friday.


3) Japan’s December factory output shrank as machinery production declines

Japan’s factory output in December slowed down for the first time in three months as a decline in machinery outweighed a small rise in car production. December factory output fell 1.0% in December from the previous month, which was higher than a 0.8% decline estimated by economists.

Meanwhile, retail sales for December posted their third straight month of gains on a year-on-year basis.


4) T-Mobile to terminate unvaccinated employees by April 2

T-Mobile US Inc will terminate corporate employees who are not fully vaccinated with Covid-19 vaccine by April 2, according to an internal company memo posted on the blog. Prior to the termination, corporate  employees who have not yet taken action to receive their first dose and upload proof by February 21 will be placed on unpaid leave.

T-Mobile has become another big corporation in the U.S. to announce a termination of unvaccinated employees. Earlier in January, Citigroup was the first institution in Wall Street to strictly enforce a vaccine mandate on its U.S. employees.