Asian stocks fall as Treasury yield fans economic growth concern

3 Major Concerns as US 10-Year Yields Test 3%

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.99 percent and peaked at 3 percent.

All eyes will be on scandal-hit social media firm Facebook later when it reports its results though there was plenty keeping investors occupied till then.

MSCI's index is on track for its fourth straight decline, its longest losing streak in a month.

Since the global financial crisis in 2008-09, a combination of low inflation expectations and a bond-buying program by the Federal Reserve have helped keep bond yields low, but they have climbed this year as inflation has picked up.

"(A strong) dollar makes gold expensive for non-U.S. buyers and rising yields increase the opportunity cost of holding gold, which is another factor lessening gold's appeal".

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"The now healthier global economy justifies these higher yields", said JPMorgan Asset Management's Seamus Mac Gorain.

The yield on the two-year Treasury yield also extended its gains, up to over 2.5 percent. "A move beyond this level would likely require an acceleration of inflation in the euro zone and Japan, which is not yet evident". Markets want to know when the European Central Bank plans to wind down its €2.55-trillion stimulus programme. Britain's FTSE 100 lost 0.8 percent to 7,368. It rose 0.4 percent to $68.64 a barrel in NY the previous day.

USA equity markets fell on Tuesday night (S&P500 -1.3%, NASDAQ -1.7%) partly in response to the move in United States 10 year Treasuries to 3%. The reports confirm that the first three months of the year have been largely positive for companies, as they enjoy a strong global economy, despite recent tensions between the USA and China over trade.

"It's a round number and one we haven't touched too frequently, so it's going to get some attention", said Mark Luschini, chief investment strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott.

Earnings season has gotten off to a stronger start than was initially expected, with the growth rate for the quarter now at 22%, according to Thomson Reuters data.

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MISPRINT: Alphabet slid 4.6 percent to $1,024.89 after the company said ad revenue climbed, but expenses also rose.

US stocks couldn't hang on to an early gain and finished mostly lower Monday as technology companies slipped.

Wednesday marked the first time the 10 year Treasury yield has hit 3% since January 2nd 2014, with 3.05% (the highs at that time) the next target for the market.

Fed Funds rate futures prices 0#FF: have been constantly falling this month, pricing in a considerable chance of three more rate hikes by the end of this year.

In my recent blog Investors Must Watch Bond Market for Signs of Economic Strain: "Investors could do well watching the bond market as the idea of tax cuts and more spending in an economy that has full employment and a large budget deficit is an interesting challenge to the conventional economic thinking". It finished at 2.98 percent on Monday and stood at 2.43 percent at the beginning of the year. Earlier on Thursday, the USA currency touched a 2-1/2 month high of 109.49 yen.

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