Markets Overview

  • ASX SPI 200 futures little changed at 7,829.00
  • Dow Average down 0.8% to 39,475.90
  • Aussie down 0.8% to 0.6520 per US$
  • US 10-year yield fell 6.9bps to 4.1981%
  • Australia 3-year bond yield fell 3.3 bps to 3.68%
  • Australia 10-year bond yield fell 5.5 bps to 4.04%
  • Gold spot down 0.7% to $2,165.44
  • Brent futures down 0.4% to $85.43/bbl

Economic Events

The rally in stocks lost traction Friday, with the market still notching its best week in 2024 amid speculation the Federal Reserve will be able to cut interest rates as soon as June.

US equities wavered after a record-breaking run that drove the S&P 500 up about 10% this year. In an almost broad-based weekly advance, the gauge climbed more than 2% in the span. The market resilience has left strategists scrambling to update their targets, while spurring calls for a consolidation or a pullback.

In the absence of economic data, traders kept an eye on Fedspeak. Jerome Powell’s remarks during a “Fed Listens” event didn’t include monetary policy. Michael Barr, the Fed’s vice chair for supervision, said there will likely be significant changes to a proposal to force lenders to hold more capital.

The S&P 500 closed below 5,235. Treasury 10-year yields slipped six basis points to 4.21%. The dollar approached its highest level this year.

Other News

Muzinich & Co Inc. is expanding its private credit business in Australia to capture a slice of the country’s A$3.6 trillion ($2.4 trillion) pension pool even amid a slowdown in global fund raising activity.

The New York-based fund manager, which established a Sydney office in 2020, hired Aris Allegos as a director in Melbourne, its first employee in that city, according to a spokesperson. Allegos, who was previously managing director at fintech lender Moula and has also worked at Credit Suisse Group AG and Nomura Holdings Inc. in Hong Kong, will focus on originating loans and fund raising for its private credit funds.

“My presence down here is to ensure we’re closer to some of the decision makers across both institutional capital and wealth platforms,” he said in an interview Friday. He’ll report to Andrew Tan, Muzinich’s APAC chief executive officer in Singapore.

Muzinich, which manages around $35 billion globally according to the spokesperson, raised a $500 million private credit fund last year focused on the Asia Pacific. It also launched MLoan, a parallel lending fund which invests in bank loans to mid-market European companies alongside a lender as well as an Australian feeder fund targeted at private wealth investors and family offices.

The firm’s expansion in Australia comes at a time when fund raising in the sector has declined after several years of heady growth that saw the market reach $1.7 trillion. Private credit funds raised around $191 billion in 2023, the lowest since 2018, according to data from PitchBook, as M&A activity slowed and competition increased from traditional banks in the buyout financing market.