Summary of Last Week’s Stock Markets, Oil, Gold, and Currencies

Last week saw a sharp sell-off in risky assets worldwide after the fourth round of ceasefire talks between Ukraine and Russia ended inconclusively. In addition, the inflation rate in the U.S. was higher than expected and there is a tendency for a further increase. This led to expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will have to tighten monetary policy further. The jump in global oil prices has also increased the pressure to raise the production rate.

—- The Dow on the New York Stock Exchange closed lower Friday as it remained under pressure due to concerns over the conflict in Ukraine. Investors are focused on the Federal Reserve (Fed) monetary policy meeting this week.

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 32,944.19, down 229.88 or -0.69%.
  • The S&P500 index closed at 4,204.31 points, down 55.21 points, or -1.30%.
  • The NASDAQ closed at 12,843.81, down 286.16, or -2.18%.

—- Oil futures closed higher on Friday as investors are concerned about the disruption of oil supplies in the wake of sanctions imposed on Russia.

  • WTI crude futures were up $3.31, or 3.1%, at $109.33 a barrel, but were down 5.5% for the week.
  • BRENT crude futures were up $3.34, or 3.1%, at $112.67 a barrel, but were down 4.6% for the week.

—- The gold contract closed lower on Friday under pressure from the stronger dollar. Investors sell gold contracts after Russian President Vladimir Putin said that progress has been made in negotiations on the conflict in Ukraine.

  • The gold contract was down $15.4, or 0.77%, at $1,985 an ounce. But gold futures were up 0.9% this week.
  • Silver contracts were down 9.6 cents, or 0.37%, at $26.16 an ounce.
  • The platinum contract was down $6.6, or 0.6%, at $1,088.6 per ounce.
  • Palladium was down $123.70, or 4.2%, at $2,796.80 an ounce.

—- The U.S. dollar gained against the major currencies in the currency basket on Friday. Given concerns about the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, investors flocked to the dollar as a supposed safe haven.

  • The dollar index against the six major currencies in a basket of currencies was up 0.62% at 99.1230.
  • The US dollar strengthened against the yen at 117.34 yen from 116.08 yen.
  • The dollar strengthened against the Swiss franc at 0.9347 francs from 0.9301 francs.
  • The US dollar was lower against the Canadian dollar to 1.2726 Canadian dollars from 1.2759 Canadian dollars.
  • The euro was lower against the dollar at $1.0910 from $1.0991.
  • The pound fell to $1.3037 from $1.3099.
  • The Australian dollar weakened to $0.7296 from $0.7366.
  • The baht depreciated against the dollar at 33.27 baht per dollar.

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