A drop in tech shares drove U.S. stocks lower, while Treasuries retreated after a surprise Bank of Canada rate increase fueled bets the Federal Reserve is not done with its own tightening.

The Nasdaq 100 fell 1.8 per cent, with the likes of Alphabet Inc. and Microsoft Corp. off at least 3 per cent. It was the first drop of the past five sessions for the technology-heavy gauge. Megacap tech companies had powered the S&P 500 to the brink of a bull market before Wednesday’s pullback. The small-cap Russell 2000 added 1.8 per cent, climbing for a second day after weeks of underperformance. 

Yields on the policy-sensitive two-year rose to 4.56 per cent as traders drove up wagers for a quarter point hike in U.S. interest rates by July. 

“You could see a little bit of a pullback because of the froth in the market,” Seema Shah, chief global strategist at Principal Asset Management, told Bloomberg Television. “If you don’t get a recession sooner, the later it is, the harder it becomes. You want to get this out of the way.”

Expectations of higher interest rates for longer, in order to combat inflation, are weighing on the tech sector. Policy decisions are due from the Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank next week, with the Fed signaling it may pause rate hikes in June before resuming them later. 

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“In marked contrast to the Fed, the Bank of Canada seems comfortable going into a meeting without its rate decision presignaled to the market,” said Deutsche Bank strategist Alan Ruskin. 

He expects a “hawkish hold” as the more likely decision from the U.S. central bank. “In part because of the meeting’s timing, coming both before the May labor market data, and, the Federal Reserve’s June FOMC, that favors a ‘skip’ decision,” he wrote in a note to clients.

Bridgewater Associates’ billionaire founder Ray Dalio said while interest rates won’t go much higher, the economy will get worse. 

“We are at the beginning of a late, big-cycle debt crisis when you are producing too much debt and have a shortage of buyers,” Dalio said from the Bloomberg Invest conference in New York.

In currency markets, Turkey’s lira slumped about 7 per cent to a record low against the dollar amid increasing signs that policymakers may be scaling back interventions to support the currency. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s appointment of former Merrill Lynch strategist Mehmet Simsek as his new Treasury and finance minister has sparked expectations of a return to more orthodox monetary policy and raised the prospect of reduced intervention in markets.

Elsewhere, gold tumbled. Bitcoin slid in the wake of a sweeping crackdown by U.S. regulators. And oil gained, driving energy shares higher. 

Key events this week:

  • Eurozone GDP, Thursday
  • Rate decisions in India, Peru, Thursday
  • Japan GDP, Thursday
  • U.S. wholesale inventories, initial jobless claims, Thursday
  • China PPI, CPI, Friday

Some of the main moves in markets:


  • The S&P 500 fell 0.4 per cent as of 4:01 p.m. New York time
  • The Nasdaq 100 fell 1.8 per cent
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.3 per cent
  • The MSCI World index fell 0.3 per cent


  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed
  • The euro was little changed at US$1.0695
  • The British pound was little changed at US$1.2432
  • The Japanese yen fell 0.4 per cent to 140.22 per dollar


  • Bitcoin fell 1.7 per cent to US$26,484.1
  • Ether fell 1.4 per cent to US$1,850.08


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries advanced 13 basis points to 3.79 per cent
  • Germany’s 10-year yield advanced eight basis points to 2.46 per cent
  • Britain’s 10-year yield advanced four basis points to 4.25 per cent


  • West Texas Intermediate crude rose 1.2 per cent to US$72.61 a barrel
  • Gold futures fell 1.2 per cent to US$1,957.30 an ounce