Emerging markets mauled by bearish investors

A woman walks past an Indonesian stock exchange display board in Jakarta on August 20, 2013.
Bay Ismoyo | AFP | Getty Images
A woman walks past an Indonesian stock exchange display board in Jakarta on August 20, 2013.

There is more carnage in emerging markets that's triggering a flight to quality and driving down U.S. Treasury yields. Indonesia is down another 3.5 percent today, and Thailand has shed 2 percent.

With the U.S. dollar at two-month lows, emerging market currencies like the Indian rupee, the Thai baht and the Indonesian rupiah are under pressure as money leaves the emerging market area. The Indonesian market is down almost 11 percent in the last four days.

"What we are seeing across the emerging markets is a recalibration of investor's expectations that were seemingly too optimistic during the second half of 2012 and first part of 2013." Adrian Miller of GMP Global says.

He may be on to something. Take a look at the performance of key emerging market stock benchmarks since the beginning of May:

Indonesia -17.3%

Thailand -14.2%

Philippines -7.7%

China -4.8%

South Korea -3.9%

The biggest problem, of course, is that it is August. Volumes are painfully light, and while traders invent phantoms to worry about, there is painfully little hard news to trade off of.


1) Home Depot: the remodeling boom remains intact. No disappointments in any metric of their report. Same store sales were up 10.7 percent, almost twice expectations; earnings of $1.24 were also above expectations of $1.21.

The company also raised its 2013 earnings per share (EPS) to $3.60 (from $3.52) and raised its comparable store guidance to 6 percent from 4 percent. Traffic was up 4.9 percent, the average ticket price was up 4.3 percent as there was strength in the big ticket items like appliances and flooring.

This was a home run on almost every level. However, there is no escaping the fact that HD is still an interest-rate sensitive stock. With interest rates rising, and the stock already trading at some 21 times forward earnings, it's hard to argue for a multiple expansion.

By CNBC's Bob Pisani

  • Bob Pisani

    A CNBC reporter since 1990, Bob Pisani covers Wall Street from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.