European headline shares opened cautiously today as investors continued to fret over the supposed tapering of US stimulus measures. The trepidation is partly justified as officials themselves have not come to a unified agreement regarding the longevity of the stimulus measures. However, pragmatists will be quick to point out that the measures will continue but just in a smaller scale.
It will be interesting to see whether this will be enough to maintain investors’ faith in the potential returns with equities if the tapering begins in September.
On another note, it seems low volumes are not the only problem affecting the markets at the moment. Traders in the Nasdaq stock market were left in the dark yesterday after trading was shutdown for around three hours as a result of a software glitch. Investors were particularly disappointed as the suspension is part of a series of recent mishaps, including Goldman Sachs infamous mistaken options trade, which are disrupting investors’ confidence in the markets.
Thus, perhaps more emphasis needs to be placed on ensuring better regulation of the structures supporting the markets and not the markets themselves.