Weekly Update 17 Aug 2018
National currencies, bonds, and major stock indexes were higher, while cryptocurrencies and commodities were mixed. The largest gain was in Bitcoin, which rose 9.7% while most other major cryptos were falling. Gold stocks fell 8.2%, the largest drop for any asset class, and the only equity to close lower.
The Japanese Yen was once again the strongest currency, adding 3.3%. The Chinese Yuan was the weakest, gaining 2.1%. US Dollar cash and short term bonds rose 3.1% apiece, while TLT, the 20+ Year bond fund gained 3.3%.
Bitcoin worked its way higher all through the week, ending up 9.7%. Ethereum fell hard early in the week, losing 13.3% by Tuesday, then rallying to finish the week down 2.6% at 8.3 grams. Bitcoin was much stronger than other major cryptos, as well. For instance, DASH dropped 8.0% for the week, following a similar pattern to ETH. Speculation has it that those concerned with a contagion of Turkish financial problems and/or a coming Yuan devaluation are using Bitcoin as a safe haven vehicle.
Gold stocks, as measured by the HUI, fell 8.2%, trading more in line with commodities than with the other equities. The Dow industrials led the major indexes higher, rising 4.5%. The Euro STOXX trailed behind, gaining 2.0%.
The only rising commodities were palladium, up 1.2%, and crude oil, up 0.4%. The largest losses were in platinum and coffee, off 3.0% and 2.5% respectively. Silver ended the week down 1.7%, and copper was lower by 1.0%.
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