Weekly Update 4 Jan 2019
Another short trading week over New Years has given mixed results for most asset classes. The largest gains were once again in Ethereum, which rose 12.2%. Crude oil reversed course to gain 5.7%. The largest losses were in Bitcoin, down 1.8%, and the Chinese Yuan, off 1.5%.
The Chinese Yuan was the weakest of all national currencies this week, falling 1.5%. Its neighbor, the Japanese Yen was the strongest, rising 2.0%. The Canadian Dollar also did well, gaining 1.8%. The US Dollar was little changed, declining 0.1%. Short term bonds were unchanged and long term bonds, as measured by TLT, gained 0.8%.
Bitcoin started the week strongly, then dipped to a low of 91.0 grams on Dec 31st, but recovered to finish the week at 93.7 grams, off 1.8%. Ethereum followed a similar pattern, but fell less and gained more to end the week up 12.2%, the best performance of any asset class.
The only declining equity index was the Nikkei 225, which showed a small loss of 0.3%. Gold stocks were the best performers, adding 2.6%. The Euro STOXX barely outperformed their US counterparts, rising 1.9% compared to the 1.8% gain managed by the S&P 500.
Commodities were mostly higher. The extremes were copper, which fell 1.4%, and crude oil, which rose 5.7%. Silver was also a winner, gaining 2.6%. Platinum fell to a new all-time low of 19.0 grams on Wednesday, but recovered to finish the week up 1.5% at 19.4 grams.
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