NEW YORK (dpa-AFX) - Significantly higher US inflation figures have put the US stock markets under further pressure in the middle of the week. This added to investor concerns that price pressures could stifle the recovery of the world's largest economy. Technology stocks again topped the long list of losers.
The Dow Jones Industrial , which had climbed over 35 points to a record high for the first time at the beginning of the week, fell below the 000 mark on Wednesday to its lowest level since mid-April. The leading index closed 34 percent lower at 000 1,99 points.
Consumer prices rose by 4,2 percent in April compared to the same month last year. That was the highest rate since September 2008. Analysts had expected an increase of 3,6 percent on average. This means that inflation is now well above the target of two percent set by the US Federal Reserve. However, recently, US central bankers had repeatedly pointed out that they viewed the current rise in inflation as a temporary phenomenon that did not require a quick change to the extremely loose monetary policy.
"At first glance, inflation of 4,2 percent looks really alarmingly high," commented Thomas Gitzel, chief economist at VP Bank. However, the sharp rise in inflation must be “properly classified”. In April 2020, prices fell sharply due to the measures taken against the corona pandemic and an extensive standstill in the US economy, Gitzel put into perspective.
Among the individual stocks, the shares of Amazon were in the investor focus with a loss of 2,2 percent. CEO Jeff Bezos sold more Amazon shares and in May alone cashed in shares worth 6,7 billion dollars. In total, Bezos parted with around two million shares in his group in the past few days.
According to a ruling by the EU court, the world's largest online retailer did not benefit from illegal tax advantages in Luxembourg. The responsible judges overturned an order from the EU Commission on Wednesday, according to which Luxembourg should demand around 250 million euros in taxes plus interest from Amazon.
Domino's Pizza stocks soared to a record high of $ 447,50 in early trading, but subsequently crumbled, saving a relatively meager 0,7 percent gain. The early price rally was triggered by the news that Pershing Square Capital Management, controlled by financial investor Bill Ackman, has acquired a stake in the fast food chain worth almost a billion dollars. According to his own statements, Ackman now owns almost six percent of the shares in the pizza chain.
The Euro was under pressure after the inflation figures in US trade and last cost 1,2075 dollars. The European Central Bank (ECB) had set the reference rate at 1,2118 (Tuesday: 1,2170) dollars. The dollar had thus cost 0,8252 (0,8217) euros.
In the US government bond market, prices fell after the sharp rise in inflation. The futures contract for ten-year treasuries (T-Note Future) decreased by 0,41 percent to 131,91 points. The yield on ten-year bonds rose to 1,70 percent.