Iran Sanctions And OPEC's Deliberations Have Failed To Lift Oil Prices

OPEC+ members met over the weekend to discuss the oil market and the possible actions they may take at the next OPEC meetings scheduled for June 25th and 26th. OPEC’s press release reported:

Following its 14th Meeting, which took place on 19 May 2019, in Jeddah, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) has reaffirmed its commitment to achieving a balanced market and working towards oil market stability on a sustainable basis with solid fundamentals.”

After the meeting, ministers spoke with reporters. According to reporting by CNBC:

Saudi Arabia’s influential oil minister, Khalid al-Falih, warned that global crude stockpiles are rising, threatening to swamp the world in oil and cause prices to collapse. Overall, the market is in a delicate situation. On the one hand, there is a lot of concern — and we acknowledge it — about disruptions and sanctions and supply interruptions. But on the other hand, we see inventories rising. We see plentiful supply around the world, which means we think, all in all, we should be in a comfortable situation in the weeks and months to come.” Continue reading "Iran Sanctions And OPEC's Deliberations Have Failed To Lift Oil Prices"

Semiconductor Sector Drags Market Lower

Hello traders everywhere. Semiconductor stocks fell after the ruling that Qualcomm used its dominant position to exact excessive licensing fees, a decision that could shake up the broader smartphone industry. Qualcomm (QCOM) fell -12%, while other chip stocks also dropped which in-turn has pulled the overall market as we head into afternoon trading.

Today's declines followed a Tuesday rebound for chip stocks after the White House granted temporary exemptions to an export blacklist against Huawei Technologies, potentially easing U.S.-China tensions as the two sides seek to get trade talks back on track. Some analysts expect trade-related swings to continue until investors get more clarity on escalating tariff threats by both sides.

Semiconductor

On the trade war front, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC's Ylan Mui that a trip to Beijing to retake trade negotiations has not been scheduled yet. This lowered hope of a speedy resolution to the U.S.- China trade war.

President Donald Trump followed through with his threat to increase tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods from 10% to 25% earlier this month. China immediately responded by upping the tariffs on $60 billion of U.S. goods to as high as 25%.

Key Levels To Watch This Week:

Continue reading "Semiconductor Sector Drags Market Lower"

Socially Responsible ETFs May Focus On More Than You Thought

With what seems like a never-ending flow of new Exchange Traded Fund options for investors to dump money into, one of the more popular, besides indexing, themes are the ‘socially responsible’ exchange traded funds. These funds focus on companies which are seen to be socially responsible. That could and often does mean many things, but for the most part, it represents companies which rate high on environmental, social, and corporate governance scales.

Firm meeting the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria are also believed to have higher rates of return for investors because these companies are less likely to deal with government-imposed fines or just plain old bad publicity. But socially responsible ETF investing just doesn’t end with the ESG firms; it often excludes all companies that fall into the ‘sin stock’ categories. These would include, alcohol, tobacco, gambling, adult entertainment, weapons, and obviously now the marijuana companies. One ETF, which we will get to in just a moment even goes as far as focusing on companies which employ women in high-level leadership positions.

So, before you decide that socially responsible is just for ‘tree huggers’ and isn’t for you, take a look at a few of the ETFs I have highlighted below, and maybe one of them will strike a chord with you.

The first ETF on my list is the iShares MSCI KLD 400 Social ETF (DSI) which is one of the oldest ESG ETFs with an inception date of November 4th, 2006. Due to its long history, it is also one of the largest ESG funds with $1.4 billion in assets under management. However, DSI is in the middle of the range in terms of costs, as the fund carries an expense ratio of 0.25%. DSI tracks a market-cap-weighted index of 400 companies which are considered to have the highest positive environmental, social, and governance characteristics by MSCI. With that being said, Facebook (FB) is the second largest holding in the fund and with the companies ‘data’ scandals in its recent past, some would say the fund has too many holdings which don’t fully represent ‘true’ ESG principles. And because the fund is market-cap weighted, its top ten holdings represent 27% of the fund. So, with all that being said, DSI is an ESG fund, but not for the die-hards. So, if you on the fence about ESG investing, this is a good option to consider. Continue reading "Socially Responsible ETFs May Focus On More Than You Thought"

Bitcoin Duplicates Gold Chart

“It's not gods who make pots” as investors move the market, pushing the buttons and sending the orders to the marketplace. It’s clear that they tend to behave one way or another, and that’s why patterns exist and appear from time to time as “there is no new thing under the sun.” It doesn’t matter what the instrument is it, let it be a very old commodity or a new digital asset, it is people who “worship” it, make it valuable and move the price of it.

Bitcoin caught the hype again recently after a disastrous 2018 when it was just falling all way down. I would like to share with you an interesting similarity in the chart structure of “perpetual” gold and Bitcoin aka “new gold” to find out if this rally is a part of something bigger.

Do you think Bitcoin is a good investment?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Let’s start from the monthly gold chart as it is a model for the Bitcoin chart. Continue reading "Bitcoin Duplicates Gold Chart"

Weekly Futures Recap With Mike Seery

Gold Futures

Gold futures in the June contract settled last Friday in New York at 1,287 an ounce while currently trading at 1,279 down about $8 for the week ending on a sour note. I had been recommending a bullish position from around the 1,301 level as it is time to exit and move on as prices hit a two week low experiencing another false breakout. Gold prices hit a five-week high earlier in the week looking to break out, however, then the stock market stabilized as it generally does throughout history sending money flows back into equities and out of the metals. The U.S dollar is hovering near a two year high as I have a bullish position in that currency as that also has put pressure on gold prices which now look to test the major support around the 1,267 area so sit on the sidelines and let's wait for another trend to develop. Silver prices are hitting a five-month low today, and that is also putting pressure on gold as I also have a bearish copper recommendation which continues to drip lower weekly as the commodity markets, in general, remain weak. Gold prices are now trading under their 20 and 100-day moving average as the trend has turned south, however for the real breakout to occur we have to break the May 2nd low of 1,267 and if that does happen, expect lower prices ahead.
TREND: LOWER
CHART STRUCTURE: EXCELLENT
VOLATILITY: AVERAGE

Copper Futures

Copper futures in the July contract are currently trading at 2.7715 after settling last Friday in New York at 2.7375 a pound continuing its bearish momentum as the whole precious metal sector looks weak in my opinion. I have been recommending a bearish position from around the 2.8240 level, and if you took that trade the stop loss has now been lowered to 2.8410 and then in Tuesday's trade will drop all the way down to 2.8100 as the chart structure will improve daily. Copper prices are trading far below their 20 and 100-day moving average as the trend is lower, however for the bearish momentum to continue we have to break the May 13th low of 2.7090 in my opinion as I will possibly be looking at adding more contracts to the downside. The U.S dollar is right near a two year high as I also have a bullish recommendation in that currency as that is also putting pressure on copper and most of the commodity sectors. The volatility is high as that should remain that way throughout the summer months as historically speaking copper can have crazy daily price swings with high risk so stay short.
TREND: LOWER
CHART STRUCTURE: EXCELLENT
VOLATILITY: HIGH

Continue reading "Weekly Futures Recap With Mike Seery"