Stock Markets, Oil, Gold, and Foreign Exchange – Here’s How the Markets Developed Last Week

—- The Dow on the New York Stock Exchange closed higher Friday (April 1) after employment data released in March indicated that the U.S. economy remains strong, but it is also a signal that the Federal Reserve (Fed) will be more proactive in raising interest rates to curb inflation.

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 34,818.27, up 139.92, or +0.40%.
  • The S&P 500 closed at 4,545.86 points, up 15.45 points, or +0.34%.
  • The NASDAQ closed at 14,261.50 points, up 40.98 points, or +0.29%.

—- Crude oil futures closed lower, falling the most in two years on a weekly basis. The U.S. government announced the largest oil drawdown from strategic reserves, causing the price of U.S. crude oil to fall below $100 per barrel.

  • WTI crude futures were down $1.01, or 1%, at $99.27 a barrel. This is the lowest closing level since March 16.
  • BRENT crude futures were down 32 cents, or 0.3%, at $104.39 a barrel.

—- The gold contract closed lower under pressure from a stronger dollar and a rise in 10-year U.S. Treasury note yields following the release of U.S. jobs data for March.

  • Gold futures fell $30.3, or 1.55%, at $1,923.7 per ounce, and were down 1.6% for the week.
  • Silver was down 47.9 cents, or 1.91%, at $24.654 an ounce.
  • The platinum contract was down $7.2, or 0.72%, at $988.6 per ounce.
  • Palladium was up $11.90, or 0.5%, at $2,267.50 an ounce.

—- The U.S. dollar strengthened against the major currencies of the currency basket on expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) will accelerate interest rate hikes. U.S. data released in March showed that the labor market and the U.S. economy remained strong.

  • The dollar index against the six major currencies in a basket of currencies rose 0.33% to 98.6320.
  • The U.S. dollar strengthened against the yen at 122.61 yen from 121.59 yen.
  • The dollar strengthened against the Swiss franc at 0.9254 francs from 0.9226 francs.
  • The dollar was higher against the Canadian dollar at 1.2510 Canadian dollars from 1.2479 Canadian dollars.
  • The euro was lower against the dollar at $1.1042 from $1.1073.
  • The pound fell to $1.3105 from $1.3136.
  • The Australian dollar strengthened to $0.7497 from $0.7489.
  • The baht weakened to 33.45 baht per dollar from 33.57 baht per dollar.

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