Weekly Market Recap – June 24, 2022
The Russian ruble, which had collapsed to 139-per-U.S.-dollar after Putin invaded Ukraine, was the strongest major currency during the week. On Tuesday, the ruble traded at 54 per dollar, its best level since June 2015. On Wednesday, President Biden urged Congress to suspend the Federal tax on gasoline and diesel fuel for three months. European Union leaders announced on Thursday that Ukraine would be a candidate to join the E.U. bloc.
There were fewer than usual U.S. economic statistics released during the week. The monthly numbers were existing home sales (5.41 million vs. 5.60 million) and new home sales 696,000 vs. 629,000). On a quarterly basis, the current account deficit was -$291 billion in Q1 vs. -$225 billion in Q4. Weekly stats were initial jobless claims at 229,000 vs. 231,000 and continuing claims at 1.32 million vs.1.31 million.
Stock market investors saw a huge reversal after a nearly three-week losing streak. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 31,500.68 (+5.4%) the S&P 500 rallied 6.4% to close at 3,911.74, and the NASDAQ Composite shot up to 11,607.62 (+7.5%). CBOE’s VIX drifted down to 27.23 (-12.5%). In currencies, USD Index futures stabilized, closing the week at 103.959 (-0.5%). In the commodity sector, prices retreated overall, as per S&P’s GSCI as the futures portfolio index dropped to 735.03 (-2.5%).
Of the six metal futures we track, all but one moved lower. The gainer was palladium, advancing 3.1% to close at $1,854.30 per ounce. End-of-week prices and percentage losses of the other five were as follows: gold at $1,830.30 (-0.6%), silver at $21.125 (-2.1%), platinum at $903.70 (-2.8%), copper at $3.7405 (-6.8%) and aluminum at $2,456 (-1.7%).
The energy category was mixed. As we saw the prior week, the fundamentals of international natural gas futures remained diametrically opposed. NYMEX natural gas is priced at Henry Hub in Louisiana, and the ICE-Index exchange uses a virtual hub in the Netherlands for pricing its transactions. The U.S. product plunged 10.4% and the European variant, Dutch Gas, soared 9.1%. The settlement prices were $6.220 per MMBtu and €128.505 per MWHr., respectively. In petroleum-based futures, the markets were also mixed, but the movements were less dramatic. Closing prices and net weekly percentage changes were as follows: WTI crude at $107.62 per barrel (-0.3%), Brent crude at $113.12 (unchanged), heating oil at $4.3629 per gallon (+0.5%), and RBOB gasoline at $3.8848 (+2.4%).
Futures in the agricultural sector weakened across the board, as all nine contracts in our recap tumbled by varying degrees. Friday settlement results were: soybeans at $16.10¾ (-5.4%), corn at $7.50¼ (-4.4%), wheat at $9.23¾ (-10.7%), coffee at $2.2325 (-1.8%), sugar at 18.31¢ (-2.2%), cocoa at $2,432 (-0.04%), cotton at 98.05¢ (-17.1%), live cattle at 133.375 (-2.3%), and lean hogs at 106.775 (-1.0%).
Futures Referenced in Market Recap
|ICE||Dutch TTF Gas||July|
|NYMEX||ULSD (Heating Oil)||July|
|LME||Aluminum||3 Mo. Forward|
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