Weekly Market Recap – May 18th, 2018
In the Markets
This week brought tension regarding the June 12 meeting between President Trump and Kim Jong Un, as North Korean officials pushed back against any plans that involve unilateral abandonment of their nuclear weapons capabilities. As the historic summit in Singapore inches closer, Pyongyang expressed critiques of the U.S. model used in Libya in 2003, where dictator Muammar Qaddafi made a deal to remove their nuclear weapons, only to be captured and killed by U.S. backed rebels in 2011. Concerned that he could share this fate, Kim may enter Singapore in June with a defensive stance towards the Trump administration’s primary target of denuclearization.
The U.S. and China made steps in their negotiations this week, as the White House announced China’s intentions to make an additional $200 billion in purchases from the U.S, which the Trump administration hopes would cut into the trade deficit with China, which reached $375.2 billion last year. A wrench was thrown into the system, however, when the Chinese media denied this claim on Friday, calling the alleged trade deficit decrease a misunderstanding.
Treasury yields rose as the 10-yr Treasury note hit 3.11%, its highest level since 2011. As this sent June Treasury bond futures on the decline, the USD rallied, with the index up 1.23% higher on the week. Gold suffered as the USD strengthened, falling by 2.12% on the week and reaching a new low for 2018 as June futures fell below $1300.
Crude Oil remained bullish, with WTI June Futures climbing by 0.82%, while Brent Crude surpassed $80/bbl before closing the week up 2.97% at $79.30/bbl. Gasoline rose 2.32%, and heating oil was up by 2.03% as crack spreads increased with strong performances from oil products.
All three major stock indices saw losses this week, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 falling 0.5%, while the NASDAQ dropped 0.7%.
World Cup Trading Championships
Wayne Wan announced himself in this tournament by vaulting into the top 3 this month. Wan let his competitors know he was here to stay, retaining third place, with a net gain of 1.38% on the week to close Friday at 85.18%.
Jan Smolen dropped 6.6% on the week, but held onto second place. His deficit to front runner Paul Skarp ended the week at only 17.1%, as both he and Wan maintain their focus on the pole position. Skarp has seen these close spreads before, but has managed to stay ahead of his competition, extending his streak to 63 days in a row atop the leaderboard.
After a two week hiatus, with only one posted top 5 in the month of May, Jonathan Brum Da Silva returned to the top 5. Silva held a position on the leaderboard for 19 straight trading days in March and April, and looks to return to that form as he closed the week in 4th place with a net return of 49.62%.
Rounding out the top 5 was Takumaru Sakakibara, who maintained his position with a net return of 40.01%.
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.