July 19, 2018
US stocks finished mostly higher yesterday as Fed Chairman Powell concluded his two-day congressional testimony with an upbeat economic view. Moreover, the Beige Book was released where it showed that the US economy continued to expand. However, manufacturers in twelve districts expressed concerns about trade tariffs. The Dow Jones gained 0.3% to close at 25199 and raise its winning streak to five days, the longest since early June. SPX500 settled at 2816 to set its highest daily close in more than five months. Chairman Powell, Ex-Chairman Ben Bernanke, and Larry Kudlow hold the same view towards the US fundamentals, and they expect the economy to grow further. However, protectionism will generate risks to the global economy.
The dollar index which measures the strength of the greenback against a basket of currencies finished higher for the second consecutive day. DXY rose to a high of 95.41, but the gains faded as investors cashed in some profits. USDJPY traded at a six-month high of 113.14.
The British pound slumped to a ten-month low against the United States dollar post the release of June inflation numbers. GBPUSD traded at a low of $1.3010 as the Consumer Price Index for June missed estimations which reduced the chances of a rate hike in August meeting. On the other hand, the political turmoil remains a main threat to the cable.
Gold prices failed to rebound from a one-year low as the strong US economic outlook supports the monetary policy stance of the Federal Reserve. The gold ounce tumbled to a new 2018 low of $1221 by the opening of the European session. The silver ounce is also trading at a one-year low of $15.37.
Oil prices bounced off the lows yesterday despite the build-up in the US crude inventories as shown by the Energy Information Administration report. The EIA reported a rise of 5.836 million barrels in the US crude inventories. The West Texas Intermediate settled at $68.96 per barrel, while the Brent settled at $73.04 per barrel. Oil prices could set their largest monthly-loss since July 2016, if the weakness prevails.
July 19, 2018