It has been a year of turbulence and uncertainty, with multiple political and economic events having great influence over global market behaviours. Each market has its own trends, and investors have been forced to keep an eye out for anything which may affect the market they are trading in. Here is a look at some of the markets so far this year.
As one of the largest most volatile markets in the world, forex is no stranger to the twists and turns of political upheaval. The call of a snap general election in Britain strengthened the pound against the dollar, whilst the French election, in which the pro-EU Emmanuel Macron stormed to victory, strengthened the euro’s prospects of remaining stable.
Those trading forex, therefore, have been subject to a number of events which have caused currency values to greatly fluctuate, and current investors will be looking out for upcoming events which will increase/decrease currency values (like the UK election results).
Oil has had a rough few years, with the price per barrel dropping to $27 at the start of 2016. Although having made some gains in recent months, it has subsequently fallen again, with Brent Crude hitting $49.46 and West Texas Intermediate reaching $46.73.
This is largely due to a vast oversupply across the world, which Opec has recently been attempting to halt. With oil showing few signs of recovery so far, 2017 has certainly not been the year for oil investment, and it looks as if this is set to continue. Nothing is impossible, however, and a renewed effort from Opec may see steps in the right direction for oil production regulation.
As a safe haven asset, gold rarely sees drops in intrinsic value, and is normally a steady performer in the markets. In December 2016, however, it suffered a significant drop in value in the US, with GCM7 reaching lows of $1,135. This has since recovered to levels of around $1,220, but is nowhere near the highs of approximately 1,350 before it crashed last year.
It looks like gold may be on a slow and steady recovery, but investors must be on the look-out for possible indications of another crash in the future.
Stocks and Shares
The Brexit vote in 2016 saw stock markets tank and extreme uncertainty envelop investors. Since then, they have made a remarkable recovery. The UK All Companies sector was up 4.8% in March, and UK Smaller Companies up 7.4% compared to last year.
Topping the list for FTSE 100 shares traded is Lloyds bank, now trading at 68.22p. Therefore, it looks like the Brexit referendum’s initial shock has subsided, and business, at least for now, is back to normal.
These are just some of the stock market behaviours which have been occurring in the first half of 2017. The future is, as is always the case with global markets, very uncertain, so it remains to be seen whether investors approach investments with caution, or decide to seize opportunities as they present themselves.