Weekly Market Recap – August 20, 2021

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Weekly Market Recap – August 20, 2021


News headlines this week covered familiar topics. In Afghanistan, the Taliban took control of the country. The U.S. evacuation mission continues, and the EU is bracing for waves of Afghani refugees in the months to come. On the weather front, hurricane season is now ramping up. On Monday, tropical storm Fred peaked at 65 mph, making landfall on Florida’s panhandle. Hurricane Grace made landfall in Haiti, and intensified to 125 mph, hitting Veracruz, Mexico before petering out. Henri followed, taking aim at the East Coast. According to global average temperature data reported by NOAA, last month was the hottest July on record.

Monthly economic statistics, compared with previous levels, were as follows: retail sales -1.1% vs. -0.3%, industrial production 0.9% vs. 0.2%, capacity utilization 76.1% vs. 75.4%, business inventories 0.8% vs. 0.6%, housing starts 1.53 million vs. 1.64 million. Weekly initial jobless claims were the lowest since the pandemic began, dropping to 348,000 vs. last week’s 377,000.

Stock market indices moved lower for the first half of the week, then corrected a bit, but lost some ground from the prior Friday. The S&P 500 decreased 0.6%, ending at 4,441.67, the DJIA closed at 35,120.08 (-1.1%), and the NASDAQ Composite went out at 14,714.66 (-0.7%). Volatility soared 20.1%, as evidenced by the CBOE VIX, which spiked to 18.56. The USD Index rose to 93.45 (+1.0%). Falling prices in the commodity sector depressed the S&P GSCI to 494.42 (-5.8%), its first close below 500 in four months (494.10 on April 23).

With the exception of gold, which inched up 0.3% to settle at $1,784.00 per ounce, the other five metal futures we track here were in the minus column. The final prices were: silver at $23.112 (-2.8%), platinum at $994.20 (-3.1%), palladium at $2,276.50 (-14.30%), copper at $4.1370 (-5.8%), and aluminum eased 2.1%, with the LME Friday close at $2,546.50 per metric ton.

In the energy futures, the petroleum sector continued to sell off, closing at three-month lows. Settlements and percentage changes were as follows: WTI crude at $62.14 per barrel (-8.9%), Brent crude at $65.18 (-7.7%), ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel at $1.9082 per gallon (-8.2%), and RBOB gasoline at $2.0236 (+10.6%). Natural gas, the only non-petroleum energy product that we cover, had a down week, as well, with inventories rising more than expected. The front-month closed at $3.851 per mmBtu (-0.3%).

Of the nine agricultural contract prices we report, seven retreated, and two advanced.  Those in the red were: soybeans at $12.90 3/4 (-5.4%), corn at $5.37 (-6.3%), wheat at $7.14¼ (-6.3%), coffee at $1.8150 (-2.3%), sugar at 19.58¢ (-1.9%), cocoa at $2,567 (-2.0%), cotton at 93.10¢ (-1.3%). The winners were in the livestock category; live cattle finished at 129.050 (+0.7%), and lean hogs, closed at 88.625 (+2.4%).


Futures Referenced in Market Recap

Exchange Commodity Contract Month
CME Live Cattle October
CME Lean Hogs October
CBT Soybeans November
CBT Corn December
CBT Wheat September
ICE Coffee December
ICE Cocoa December
ICE Sugar October
ICE Cotton December
ICE Brent Crude October
NYMEX WTI Crude October
NYMEX ULSD (Heating Oil) September
NYMEX RBOB (Gasoline) September
NYMEX Natural Gas September
NYMEX Platinum October
NYMEX Palladium September
COMEX Gold December
COMEX Silver September
COMEX Copper September
LME Aluminum 3 Mo. Forward


Current Standings​

2021 World Cup Championship of Futures Trading®
1 Kevin S McCormick 253.8% United States
2 Jürg Diemand 230.6% Switzerland
3 Marek Chrastina 164.4% Slovakia
4 Graeme Adams 116.8% New Zealand
5 Lisa Chen 80.9% Canada

January 1, 2021 – December 31, 2021 – Final

2021 World Cup Championship of Forex Trading®​
1 Lorenzo Misino 405.5% Italy
2 Patrick Nill 229.2% Germany
3 Raul Glavan 190.9% Germany
4 Sergey Shirko 183.5% Latvia
5 Cristian Franchi 151.6% Italy

January 1, 2021 – December 31, 2021 – Final

2020-2021 Global Cup Trading Championship​
1 Jan Smolen 247.6% Slovakia Futures
2 Stefan Seibert 222.7% Germany Futures
3 Marek Chrastina 182.4% Slovakia Futures
4 Patrick Nill 125.7% Germany Futures
5 Maxim Schulz 78.8% Germany Futures

June 1, 2020 – May 28, 2021 – Final

Trading futures and forex involves significant risk of loss and is not suitable for everyone. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. World Cup Championship (WCC ) accounts do not necessarily represent all the trading accounts controlled by a given competitor. WCC competitors may control accounts that produce results substantially different than the results achieved in their WCC accounts. WCC entrants may trade more than one account in the competition. CME Group is the trademark of CME Group, Inc. The Globe logo is a trademark of Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Inc.

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