Weekly Update 11 Jan 2019
Results for the first full week of trading in 2019 were mixed for currencies, stocks and commodities, but lower for cryptos and bonds. Ethereum, the prior week's biggest gainer, was this week's worst loser, giving back all of its gains and then some, closing down 18.1%. Bitcoin was in second place, dropping 5.1%. Commodities were the best performers, as crude oil added another 6.6% on top of last week's 5.7% gain, and palladium rose 3.8% to close at 32.0 grams, solidly above parity with gold.
The Chinese Yuan was the strongest national currency, rising 1.9%, while the Japanese Yen was weakest, falling 1.0%. The US Dollar dropped 0.7%. Short term treasuries also fell 0.7%, but 20+ Year bonds did much worse, closing down 1.7%.
As mentioned previously, cryptocurrencies felt the most pain of any asset class. Bitcoin rallied to a high of 99.1 grams on Sunday, the sold off through the week to finish at 89.0 grams, down 5.1%. Ethereum followed a similar pattern, hitting a high of 3.8 grams on Sunday, but declining to 3.1 grams by the end of the week, for a loss of 18.1%
The HUI gold stock index closed down 2.5%, but all other major indexes were in the black. The Nikkei led the field, gaining 3.1%, followed by the S&P 500 which added 1.8% and the Dow Industrials which rose 1.7%.
Commodities, while mixed, had the largest gains of any asset group. Crude oil continued its strong recovery, gaining 6.6%, and palladium also soared, adding 3.8%, and closing solidly above the 31.1 gram gold parity level. On the other side of the ledger, cotton fell 1.0% and silver dropped 0.9%.
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