August 24: Friday close and weekend wrap

August 24: Friday close and weekend wrap

Key notes:

Nasdaq and S&P500 close at record highs

Housing data and US PMI’s beat expectations boosting USD

Republican Trump 2020 convention starts

After opening weaker in the Asian session Friday the USD regained some ground throughout the course of the day up 0.5% across the majors. Weak PMI’s in Europe and better in the US aided the decline in EUR/USD which fell from 1.1880 to 1.1755 before closing around 1.1800. Likewise the AUD had pushed to 0.7216 earlier in the day falling back to close around 0.7160. Cable also fell despite a beat on PMI data but undermined by Brexit EU/UK talks hitting yet another snag in the long battle towards its conclusion. After touching 1.3255 the pair fell back to close around 1.3100. Gold closed down slightly on the day but not before spiking to 1950 then falling to 1912 and rebounding straight back to 1940. Silver once again had a similar trajectory. All US indices closed up on the day with yet another record for the tech sector with S&P500 and Nasdaq closing at record highs but the Dow outperforming both on the day percentage wise. US politics kicks off this week with the Republican convention so watch for any speculative headlines to cause volatility as Trump is expected to make new promises if re-elected. News over the weekend of Trump potentially authorising an emergency take up of a UK based vaccine overruling the USFDA restrictions smacks of a short term pre-election fillip so expect more of the same over the coming 2.5 months. We could see the oil price affected this week as both Gulf storms Laura and Marco are due to hit this week and will cause the shut down of some refineries in the US. No data to cause excitement to start the week so expect a subdued session. The economic highlight of the week will be Jay Powell’s address at Jackson Hole on Thursday where markets will want some guidance on what to expect for the September FOMC.

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