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Monthly review - April 2021

4 months ago

QUICK LOOK
The Markets

April

5.2%

S&P 500

1.4%

EURO STOXX 50

3.8%

FTSE 100

3.3%

CAC 40

0.8%

DAX 30

2.9%

BEL 20

-2.1%

FTSE MIB

-2.7%

IBEX 35

-2.9%

TOPIX
   
 Source: Bloomberg 30.03.2021
Biden

Biden’s first 100

Joe Biden completed his first hundred days as president of the United States. The milestone was first flagged by President Franklin D Roosevelt, elected during the Great Depression on a pledge to help the American people. Many of Biden’s early promises have been delivered, and at an extraordinary pace. From the immediate re-joining of the Paris Agreement on climate change to the $1.9 trillion stimulus package dubbed the ‘American Rescue Plan’; and from the double-time rollout of Covid-19 vaccines to a proposed $2.2 trillion infrastructure plan. Biden has embraced the challenge to ‘act big’.

Suez Canal

Containers impounded

Ever Given, the vast container ship which blocked the Suez Canal, was impounded and a claim for over $900 million of damages filed. Why so much? The Suez Canal Authority cited damage to the canal, lost transit fees and loss of reputation. More than 10% of global goods pass through the canal and, as ships backed up in both directions, the value of trade blocked by the ship topped $80 billion. Supply chains serving Asian carmakers and European households were particularly impacted. Owners of the containers were advised to ‘plan for life without the cargo…'.

Cryptocurrencies

Cryptos on the Nasdaq

Heralded as a coming of age for cryptocurrencies, Coinbase was listed on the Nasdaq. The value of the digital currency exchange leapt to almost $86 billion on the first day of trading, before dropping back. It remains many times the value of the Nasdaq Exchange itself. Coinbase customers can trade and store digital currencies, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, and the exchange is riding the wave of their stellar recent performance. And Coinbase charges fees on each transaction, just as an old-fashioned stockbroker would do. Ironically, the precise model that blockchain technology claims to have consigned to history.


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