Weekly Market Recap – August 3rd, 2018
In the Markets
Interest rates remained unchanged following the Fed’s Wednesday meeting, although the central bank did change its description of the economy from solid to strong, possibly pointing to two additional rate hikes this year. The USD strengthened on the news, climbing 0.53% up to 94.961 on September futures. Gold continued its downward trend, reacting inversely to the strong USD, falling 0.76%.
The U.S. July employment report was published this week, revealing a gain of 157,000 jobs in July, pushing the unemployment rate down to 3.9%. While the increase in non-farm payroll positions was less than expected, June’s report was revised upward to 248,000 from 213,000. Wages, which have shown sluggish growth despite a tight labor market, increased 0.3%.
Copper dropped 1.37%, despite recent Union negotiations bringing Chile’s Escondida mine workers closer to a strike.
Crude oil fell, with WTI futures falling 0.29%, and Brent futures dropping at a much steeper rate, down 1.94%. Trade tension escalations between the U.S. and China sent China’s Shanghai Composite falling 4.6%, while U.S. markets remained resilient, as the Dow Jones finished even, the S&P 500 rose 0.8%, and the NASDAQ climbed a single percentage point. Grains also responded in a bullish fashion this week, with soybeans rising 1.92%, corn climbing 2.13%, and wheat roaring higher, up 4.85%.
World Cup Trading Championships
Carlos Eisenberg started the week by taking over first place to close on Monday, rallying to 119%. His stint on top was short lived, as Jan Smolen gained 20% on the week to finish back in first place with a net return of 129.5%. Eisenberg finished in second with a net return of 114.6%, followed by Kurt Sakaeda in third with a return of 98.2%. Paul Skarp remained in fourth with a net return of 81.4%. The final spot on the leaderboard shuffled between three traders this week, as Michael Cook and Takumaru Sakakibara battled for a position in the top 5. It was Fabian Fischer, however, who ended the week in fifth place with a net return of 46.7%.
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.