The Week in Review
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- Financial markets ended the quarter in the green, prompted by improving economic outlook
- Bitcoin topped $60,000 as the whole crypto market approaches $2tn valuation
Last week was the final week of a quarter dominated by extreme fluctuations, meme stocks gyrations, tech rotation, rising bond yields and multitrillion-dollar stimulus. To finish the first quarter, markets went into overdrive last week and touched record highs. The S&P500 spiked to an all-time high on the last trading day of the first quarter. On Thursday, the positive momentum continued and the upside swing took the broad stock index to a record close of 4,019.87 points. On Friday, equity markets took a break in observance of Good Friday.
The 4,000 milestone was achieved thanks to an increased tech stocks appetite on the back of lowering bond yields. Moreover, the Nasdaq Composite also gained substantially on Wednesday as the tech-heavy index jumped 1.54% on the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was more composed this week but still remained in the green, higher by 0.20% on the week.
All three benchmark stock gauges ended the quarter, the month and the week in positive territory, underpinned by vaccine progress, more fiscal stimulus in the making by the government and continued monetary support by the Federal Reserve.
The cryptocurrency market also flashed green this week with bitcoin breaking above the $60,000 level for the second time in its history. The total market cap of the crypto space now sits at an all-time high of $1.99tn. The digital asset ended the quarter higher by 103% and then added more than 3% in the first couple of days in April to peak above $60,000. Increased wide-scale adoption continued this week with Visa and PayPal enabling clients to pay with cryptocurrencies to selected merchants on their network.
On the currency market front, the US dollar remained relatively unchanged, keeping its strong positions against the Euro. The Japanese yen, generally regarded as a safe haven currency, depreciated further, prompted by high hopes for a swifter recovery of the US economy. And Gold climbed out of its lows as the end of the week approached. On Thursday and Friday, the precious metal advanced over 3% from its weekly low near $1,680.
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