Performance of European and U.S. markets was mixed this week as we near the end of the year. The S&P 500 notched another 0.89%, finishing at an all-time high while the AEX increased by 0.19% and the Eurostoxx 600 index dropped by 0.88%. It has been another exciting week in the fast-paced world of cryptocurrencies, with the price of Bitcoin gaining over 26% –pushing it ever closer to the $20,000 mark.
In the U.S, the Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal the Net Neutrality Act as part of U.S President Trump’s crackdown on regulations. Introduced in 2015 to ensure all internet service providers treat data the same, its repeal will have significant implications for the ability of large websites to outcompete smaller ones. Additionally, the FED responded to Trump’s proposed tax cuts by announcing plans to raise interest rates by 0.25%, in what will be the third rate rise of 2017. This week also saw the announcement of Walt Disney’s plans to acquire 21st Century Fox for $52.4 billion, in what would be one of the largest deals in the history of the entertainment industry.
In Europe, meanwhile, the ECB held their final meeting of the year where growth forecasts for the upcoming years were increased. In 2018, for example, Eurozone growth is anticipated to be 2.3%, up from September’s forecast of 1.8%. In England, news from the Bank of England on progress in Brexit negotiations has pushed the Pound to its highest level relative to the Euro since early June this year, despite its fears that the U.K economy may have slowed in the last quarter.
While most investment groups made positive returns this week, none managed to beat the S&P 500 index on a risk-adjusted basis. The most notable winner of the week is Primus, whose bold investment in Rotterdam-based pharmaceutical company arGEN-X paid off, yielding a +90% return. This pushed its weekly return to an impressive 6.05% and moved it up five places in the rankings. On the other hand, the loser of the week is Porto d’Oro, whose loss of -1.31% cost it five places in the ranking.
Written by Jasper Thouin