U.S. stock-index futures fell, commodities declined and the yen strengthened as sentiment toward China soured while Federal Reserve officials signaled they’re prepared to raise interest rates.
A gauge of global equities extended the biggest monthly slump in more than three years on renewed concern China’s efforts to prop up its markets will fail. The yen strengthened for the first time in five days and U.S. Treasuries rose. Russia’s ruble slid as oil declined.
More than $5 trillion has been erased from the value of shares worldwide this month as China’s surprise devaluation of the yuan on Aug. 11 sparked concern the world’s second-biggest economy may be in worse shape than analysts had estimated. Bets on a September Fed rate increase climbed after Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer said over the weekend there is “good reason” to believe inflation will accelerate.
“The markets are still digesting the China news and it seems that the uncertainty from China’s rollercoaster is not over yet,” said Guillermo Hernandez Sampere, who helps manage the equivalent of $167 million as head of trading at MPPM EK in Eppstein, Germany. “Any panic created out of this high volatility keeps investors out of the market. There’s still no clear message” on when the Fed will raise rates, he said.
Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures dropped 1 percent at 8:43 a.m. in New York. The MSCI All-Country World Index slid 0.3 percent, heading for a 6.6 percent decline in August, the biggest such slump since May 2012. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slipped 0.4 percent, with trading volumes 64 percent below the 30-day average as London markets were closed for a holiday.
Fischer stopped short of providing a clear signal on whether the Federal Open Market Committee will start to tighten policy at its next scheduled meeting Sept. 16-17, saying “we will need to consider all the available information” before coming to a judgment.

Bearish Bets

China’s stocks capped the biggest two-month slide since 2008 as bearish bets in the options market climbed. The Shanghai Composite Index sank 0.8 percent, taking its loss in August to 12 percent after a 14 percent drop in July. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng China Enterprises Index fell 0.1 percent, also down 12 percent in the month.
Stocks fell even as people familiar with the matter said China’s securities regulator asked brokerages to step up their support for share prices by contributing 100 billion yuan ($15.7 billion) to the nation’s market rescue fund and increasing stock buybacks.
The cost of options contracts betting on declines in the China 50 exchange-traded fund has surged to the highest level versus bullish ones since they started trading in Shanghai six months ago.
Russia’s ruble slid 2.1 percent to 66.80 against the dollar, leaving it 7.7 percent weaker this month. A Bloomberg gauge of 20 emerging-market currencies dropped 3.5 percent in August, its fourth monthly decline.

Haven Demand

The yen rose against all of its 16 major peers, with the biggest gains coming versus Taiwan’s dollar and South Korea’s won. It appreciated 0.4 percent to 121.27 per dollar, while the euro added 0.3 percent to $1.1221. The Aussie weakened 0.6 percent, approaching a six-year low.
Treasuries rose, with the yield on 10-year notes falling three basis points to 2.15 percent.
The euro area’s inflation rate held steady in August, with consumer prices rising an annual 0.2 percent. While that’s more than the median analyst forecast for a 0.1 percent increase, it’s less than the European Central Bank’s goal of just under 2 percent. The ECB is set to give a policy decision on Thursday.
Copper futures due in December slipped 1.2 percent on the Comex. The London Metal Exchange is closed Monday.
West Texas Intermediate crude dropped 2.6 percent to $44.04 a barrel. Oil fell below $40 a barrel this month, the lowest since February 2009, on concern slowing demand in the U.S. and China will leave the global market oversupplied.
Egypt’s EGX 30 Index climbed 2.8 percent, the most worldwide, as investors speculated an offshore natural gas discovery would end a domestic supply shortage and boost exports. Eni SpA said yesterday it discovered a natural gas field in the country’s Mediterranean waters that may hold 30 trillion cubic feet of the fuel.
(An earlier version of this story misstated the timing of Fischer’s remarks.)