Markets were relatively calm last week in anticipation of this week’s Federal Reserve meeting and G20 Summit later this month. In the U.S., the S&P500 index rose a mere +0.05% as the Dow Jones Industrial Average finished the week flat. European markets were not much more exciting, with the EuroStoxx 50 index of the fifty largest European publicly traded companies ending the week +1.13% higher. The Dutch AEX index, meanwhile, etched another +0.16%. Global markets, as reflected by the FTSE Global All-Cap index, rose just +0.07% for the week despite rising tensions between Washington and Tehran.
On Thursday, two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman were hit by blasts forcing their crew to abandon ship. Trump and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo were quick to hold Iran accountable, releasing video footage they claim shows the Iranian Special Forces commandos removing an unexploded bomb from the side of one tanker’s hull. The accusations threaten to escalate the incident into an international dispute; the UK, for instance, has responded by sending marines to the Persian Gulf to protect British ships. Oil prices jumped slightly on Thursday as the route where the tankers were hit is vital to the Middle East’s export of oil and thus form an important part of global supply. In other news, investors are speculating whether the Federal Reserve will lower or keep rates steady after their meeting scheduled early this week. A rate increase is not expected as inflation in the U.S. remains stubbornly low despite high employment. In Europe, meanwhile, French-Italian relations were improved when a joint venture involving the leading shipyards of each country was announced. As part of the deal, a new company will be established which aims to become a major player in the European military shipbuilding industry by producing 10 to 15 warships over the next decade.
Tensions are rising in the Flow Traders Investment Competition with Omega Investments spectacular launching itself to 2nd place! Thanks to gains on their investments in Alteryx and Gold ETF. Negotium Novum, meanwhile, is the loser of the week having dropped two places from their position in Advanced Micro Devices and Shell. Both Borsa Valori and B.R.O.O.D. Beleggers showed strong performance last week with the former gaining on Lululemon and RELX and the latter on Galapagos and Scotts Miracle-Gro Company. As the end of this year’s competition slowly comes into sight, will Victoria manage to stay in the lead? Or will another group snatch the prize right in the last minute? One thing is for sure –this year’s competition will be one to remember!
Written by Jasper Thouin