Weekly Market Recap – January 31st, 2020

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Weekly Market Recap – January 31st, 2020

In the Markets

The outbreak of the coronavirus continued to be the main catalyst driving movement in both equities and commodities, as the pathogen brought with it another week of bearish performance. U.S. stocks posted their worst week since October 2019, with the NASDAQ losing 1.8%, the S&P 500 dropping 2.1%, and the Dow Jones sliding 2.5%. This last week of losses brought both the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 into the red for year to date performance, with the NASDAQ managing to cling to a 2% year to date growth.

News in equities was not purely negative, as Amazon reached a new high as it achieved the $1 trillion market cap, joining other tech stocks which posted gains on the back of positive earnings reports. Overall, however, the news of China quarantining 45 million citizens, combined with the World Health Organization’s declaration of a public-health emergency, sent the majority of equities and commodity futures on the decline.

Gold was one of few examples to escape the week with gains, up 0.7%, while the rest of the precious metal sector posted losses. Silver limped through Friday with just a 0.56% descent, while platinum dropped 4.71% and palladium lost 4.51%. Copper fared even worse on the week, losing 6.22%.

Energy futures also fell across the board, with WTI and Brent crude losing 4.85% and 4.17% respectively. Gasoline made it through the week dropping just 1.75%, while heating oil plummeted 6.31%. Natural gas also continued its descent, falling another 2.75% on the week.

Soybeans and wheat moved similarly on the week, with soybeans losing 3.27% and wheat dropping 3.21%. Corn performed slightly better, with futures losing just 1.55%. Sugar joined gold as one of the few commodities making it through the week with gains, up 1.53%, while milk finished flat and coffee lost 6.8%. Lean hogs, a commodity which had exploded in price in 2019 due to a swine pathogen outbreak in China, fell 15% on the week due in part to the recent human pathogen outbreak in China.

World Cup Trading Championships

A month into the 2020 competition, the standings for the World Cup Championship of Futures Trading were unveiled this week. As of the end of January, first place lay in the hands Michael Vontobel of Tirutrade AG, a firm out of Switzerland, with a net return of 65.5%. Behrad Gavadji of Germany ended the first month of trading in second place with a net return of 52.4%, followed by Luxembourg’s Fabien Fischer and his net return of 40%. David DeNiro of the U.S. secured fourth place with a net return of 35.2%, followed closely by Taiwan’s Hao-Ming Lien fifth-best 34.6% net return.

In the Global Cup, Wayne Wan returned above the 200% mark, retaining first place with his 206.5% net return. Maxim Schulz claimed second place with a net return of 108.7%, followed by Jan Smolen’s 93.8% net return. Archie Ma took fourth place with a 74.6% net return, as the top five was finished by Michael Cook and his 62.9% net return.


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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