Weekly Market Recap – September 28th, 2018
In the Markets
As the 3rd quarter came to an end, it proved to be the strongest since 2013 for U.S. equity markets. Strong earnings growth combined with sub 4% unemployment and positive consumer confidence have maintained the bull market despite continued trade tensions. While the quarter was strong, the last week of September saw all three major indices fall, with the Dow Jones down 1.1%, the S&P 500 down 0.5%, and the NASDAQ down 0.3%.
This decline can in-part be attributed to the interest rate hike made by the Fed, bringing the federal funds rate to its highest level in 10 years. With the rising interest rates, U.S. dollar index futures rose by 1% on the week.
With the strengthening USD, gold futures fell 0.42%. Silver futures, however, posted a very strong week climbing 2.46%. Platinum fell 1.11% on the week.
Oil futures, both WTI and Brent, again posted gains on the week, rising 3.49% and 5.88% respectively, marking a net gain in the 3rd quarter as November sanctions against Iran loom on the horizon. Heating oil and gasoline futures also posted gains on the week, up 5.29% and 4.18% respectively. While it cooled off from its explosive gain last week, natural gas futures still maintained an upward trajectory, rising 1% on the week to a new high.
Soybeans, corn, and wheat all corrected down on the week. Soybeans and corn both fell slightly with soybeans falling 0.21% and corn dropping 0.28%, while wheat’s drop was more dramatic, falling 2.44%.
Softs saw some large downward moves: sugar fell 4.11%, cocoa dropped 5.08%, and cotton posted a 3.49% decline. Coffee broke from the other soft commodities, gaining 2.55% on the week.
World Cup Trading Championships
All 5 members of the top 5 remained the same through the entire week, with the only positional change coming on Tuesday when Kurt Sakaeda regained 3rd place passing Petra Ilona Zacek and finishing the week with a net return of 98.5%, less than half a percent behind second place trader Paul Skarp at 98.9%. Petra held onto fourth place with a net return of 85.9%, while Graeme Adams again rounded out the top 5, finishing the week with a net return of 62.1%.
Jan Smolen not only held onto first place yet again, but extended his lead, gaining 22% on the week to finish at 222.7%, just over 10% under his high for the year. Smolen will look to expand his lead moving forward, as his return is over twice that of any other trader in the top 5 as we move into the 4th quarter.
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.