The Category 4 storm currently heading for landfall in North Carolina and likely to cause significant local damage could also hurt the stock markets that are already looking fragile. This is not likely to be in the same league as the eventual San Francisco earthquake, but natural disasters like this can often be seen as trigger events with consequences that have a wider reach than the obvious loss of value in insurer stocks. US Equity markets are looking overbought, and in Europe the DAX (#DAX30) and FTSE 100 (#UK100) have been off their highs for several months. All look ripe for a correction, and we’d still prefer to sell rallies than buy dips. On the exchanges, whilst there may be a perception that natural disasters are dollar negative, what we normally see is the opposite as insurers sell assets to buy local currency for the expenses ahead. We’d expect the US Dollar to see some gains against weaker currencies.