A rise in U.S. Treasury yields and the dollar checked some of emerging markets' exuberance on Wednesday, with many currencies retreating from multi-week highs and equities stalling after four days of strong gains.
Strong U.S. data and company earnings and a positive outcome in the first French election round have boosted emerging assets since the start of the week, along with robust data within the developing world. Brazil, for instance, posted data on Tuesday showing its strongest current account surplus since 2015.
All that has sent MSCI's emerging equity index to near two-year highs but the benchmark was flat as U.S. bond yields rose to two-week highs and the dollar rose before U.S. President Donald Trump tax reform announcement.
Asian markets surged in response to Tuesday's strong Wall Street close. The Taiwanese dollar was at 2-1/2-year highs, Indonesian stocks rose to a record and Korean shares shrugged off geopolitics to hit six-year peaks .
However, the rouble, rand and lira slipped 0.2-0.6 per dollar, coming off multi-month highs .
"Emerging markets have performed better than anyone could possibly have imagined but given that May is always a challenging month, possibly just for psychological reasons, we will see some caution going into next week," said Simon Quijano-Evans, investment strategist at L&G Investments.
He added that Monday's May 1 holiday across Europe would also see liquidity decrease.
Focus was on Turkey's central bank, which is likely to leave interest rates unchanged at its meeting later in the day after the central bank governor said policy would remain tight to combat inflation at 8-1/2-year highs.
The lira has rallied alongside most emerging currencies in recent weeks while 10-year bond yields stand just off 4-1/2-month lows . Quijano-Evans said there was little reason for the central bank to move policy for now.
"The main thing in Turkey is politics should stay out of monetary policy. Political comments on policy have been backstage recently, that's one reason why lira has rallied from lows and if this continues to be the case the central bank can continue to deal with inflation," Quijano-Evans added.
Nigeria meanwhile weakened the naira by 18 percent for investors and will allow them to trade the currency at market-determined rates. But analysts saw the move as creating more confusion and were pessimistic it would tempt back investors.
source - reuters.com