Weekly Market Recap – February 10, 2023
As the week progressed, news about the 7.8 earthquake that spanned the Turkey-Syria border grew worse daily; the death toll has exceeded 34,000. Another continuing story has been the series of unmanned flying objects shot down by the US military, starting with a Chinese balloon on February 5th. At our press time, the tally is now four unmanned aircraft downed by American missiles over the US and Canada.
Monthly economic statistics reported during the week compared with prior numbers were: international trade balance (deficit) -$67.4 billion vs. -$61.0 billion, consumer credit $12 billion vs. $28 billion, consumer sentiment index 66.4 vs. 64.9, wholesale inventories (revision) unchanged at +0.1% and federal budget balance -$39 billion vs. -$119 billion. Weekly unemployment levels showed a rise in initial jobless claims of 196,000 from 183,000, and continuing claims rose to 1.69 million from 1.65 million. There were no significant quarterly reports.
Stock indices eased as the DJIA ended the week at 33,869.27 (-0.2%), the S&P 500 finished at 4,090.46 (-1.1%), and the NASDAQ Composite closed at 11,718.12 (-2.4%). CBOE’s VIX advanced 12.0% with its 20.53 settlement. In currencies, USD Index futures gained 0.8%, with the nearby contract ending at 103.535 on Friday. Commodities in the S&P GSCI futures portfolio rallied by 4.0%, pushing the index up to 597.60 as the week ended.
Weakness persisted across the board for the futures on our metals list. Closing prices and percentage increases were as follows: gold at $1,874.50 (-0.1%), silver at $22.075 (-1.5%), platinum at $951.80 (-2.9%), palladium at $1,524.90 (-5.8%), copper at $4.0165 (-1.0%) and aluminum at $2,440.50 (-5.0%).
All but one of the contracts rallied throughout the week in the energy markets we follow. ICE Dutch TTF gas was the outlier, losing 6.8% to €53.947 per MWh. Regarding the five domestic energy futures on our list, the final results and corresponding percentage increases looked like this: West Texas Intermediate crude at $79.72 per barrel (+8.6%), Brent crude at $86.39 (+8.1%), heating oil at $2.8646 per gallon (+3.2%), RB gasoline at $2.5037 (+7.9%), and NYMEX natural gas at $2.514 per MMBtu (+4.3%).
The contracts on our list of nine agricultural products ended the week with a score of five up and four down. The gainers were: soybeans at $15.42½ (+0.7%), corn at $6.80½ per bushel (+0.4%), wheat at $7.86 (+3.9%), coffee at $1.7475 per pound (+1.1%) and sugar at 21.58¢ per pound (+1.6). Those in the red were: cocoa at $2,564 per metric ton (-0.2%), cotton at 85.27¢ (-0.2%), live cattle at 163.950 (-0.1%), and lean hogs at 83.325 (-3.6%).
Futures Referenced in Market Recap
|ICE||Dutch TTF Gas||March|
|NYMEX||ULSD (Heating Oil)||March|
|LME||Aluminum||3 Mo. Forward|
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