The Week in Review
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- Global stocks rally takes a breather
- Bitcoin climbs to a record high, tops $48,000
Looking back at the last week, the market presented rather calm and collected trading as investors paused for breath, bringing the recent global stocks rally to a halt near record highs. US, European and Asian benchmarks performed mixed for most of the week, essentially trading flat.
US stocks lost steam as the week progressed, pausing a rally underpinned by strong corporate earnings results and high optimism about the big-ticket stimulus package to be injected into the US economy. President Biden remains very determined as he continues to work towards the approval of his economic plan. Over the course of the week, he gathered a group of business executives, and together with Vice President Kamala Harris and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen discussed the importance of the passing of the bill as soon as possible. On Thursday, Mr. Biden met with a group of bipartisan Senators to win their support as well.
Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell signaled that the Fed intends to maintain the current monetary policy until the economy shows sustained signs of improvement. Siding with the Biden administration, he also urged lawmakers to work together towards the passing of the rescue package.
A Stable Feel Permeates European Markets
European markets also took their time to reassess the current economic and political situation. European indexes performed rather steady as investors navigated a week deprived of any major economic news or developments. On the political front, in Italy, Mario Draghi looks set to become the next Prime Minister. If he is given a term, he will need to steer the country out of the pandemic and relaunch the economy. Moreover, Mr. Draghi will need to design an economic plan to accommodate the €200bn allotment from the EU’s recovery fund.
Compared to a rather calm and uneventful stock market performance, the week brought a lot of excitement to the cryptocurrency market. The price of bitcoin hit a record high on Thursday, peaking over $48,000. The record came after two major financial institutions embraced the digital asset. Mastercard and BNY Mellon announced that .,.. they will offer bitcoin services. Earlier in the week, on Monday, Tesla CEO Elon Musk followed up on his price-boosting tweets with the announcement that Tesla had bought $1.5bn worth of bitcoin. The recent news caught the attention of regulators who are now looking into the bitcoin purchase.
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