Weekly Market Recap – July 19th, 2019
In the Markets
After setting new all-time highs on multiple occasions in 2019, the major indices fell back down slightly. The Dow Jones dropped 0.7% last week, but held above the 27,000 benchmark. The NASDAQ and S&P 500 both lost 1.2% on the week, with the S&P dipping back below 3,000. As the markets move through earnings reports, investors will be looking to see if companies can exceed their low expectations as the wider global economy has been interpreted by some as cooling down.
Wall Street expectations point towards an expected interest rate cut at the end of July, but the question remains whether that will be a 25 or a 50 basis point (bp) cut. On Thursday, New York Fed President John Williams called for policymakers to “act quickly” during times of slowing economic growth, which many interpreted as a lean towards 50 bp. Afterwards Williams clarified that his comments were not about potential policy actions at the Fed’s July 31st meeting, reigniting uncertainty as to the magnitude of any potential rate cut. President Trump followed up on Twitter on Friday lobbying for the larger 50 bp cut.
Energy markets experienced an overall bearish trend last week. The ongoing trade dispute between the U.S. and China remains, joined by increasing tensions in the Middle East. On Thursday the U.S. downed an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz, an event that Tehran later denied. On Friday, Iran seized a UK oil tanker in Omani waters. WTI crude futures plummeted 7.61% and Brent crude lost 6.37%. Gasoline dropped 6.9% on the week, while heating oil made it through the week with the least losses, down 4.57%. Natural gas futures also dropped, losing 8.23% as Hurricane Barry struck the Gulf Coast.
Gold edged slightly higher by just 0.61%, while silver soared on the week, gaining 6.29%. Platinum and copper both posted gains, up 1.82% and 1.74% respectively, but palladium lost for the second consecutive week, down 2.47%.
Agricultural commodities saw several minor losses, with soybeans down 1.35%, wheat dropping 3.87%, and corn losing 4.17%. Lean hogs skyrocketed back above $80/lb., gaining 18.1%. Coffee and milk futures rose slightly, up 0.51% and 0.35% respectively, but the cup of coffee this week was unsweetened as sugar futures lost 5.77%.
World Cup Trading Championships
Durai Ramasamy held above 200% with a first-place net return of 218.3%. Kurt Sakaeda retained second place, finishing the week with a net return of 174.3%. Holger Groechel climbed back into third place at a 162.4% net return. Eduardo Ramos maintained a spot on the leaderboard with his 102.5% net return, followed closely by top 5 newcomer Tim Hall and his 99.6% 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.