By Murat Aslan
ISTANBUL (AA) - As global markets continue to be weighed down by concerns that inflation pressures could prompt earlier-than-expected monetary tightening in the US, investors are focusing on inflation figures in the UK and euro area, as well as the speeches by Fed officials.
The trend was positive in US stock markets on Tuesday following a strong rise in retail sales and the earnings of retail giants exceeding expectations.
US retail sales came in at $638.2 billion, up 1.7% from a revised $627.5 billion in September.
Concerns that the strong course in consumer spending could push inflation up caused sales to rise in bond markets.
With worldwide demand for the US dollar booming, the dollar index carried its upward trend for the third day in a row, reaching its highest level of the last 16 months with 96.2.
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen also warned on Tuesday that the US could reach its debt limit on Dec. 15, with President Joe Biden announcing that he would make his decision for the Fed chair within four days.
As political disputes in Europe continue to affect markets, Germany's energy regulator announced on Tuesday a temporary suspension of the certification procedures for the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline from Russia to Europe.
Bundesnetzagentur cited the need to form a subsidiary company under German law to govern the section of the pipeline within its borders.
In the wake of the decision, the natural gas futures contract, traded in Europe, climbed by about 16% to €94.60 ($107).
In Asia, measures introduced against rising COVID-19 cases eroded risk appetites, though a long-awaited virtual meeting between the Chinese and US leaders was priced positively in the stock markets.