Daily summary: Hawkish FOMC Minutes reading; NATGAS gains nearly 4%

8:21 PM 21 February 2024

- The trading session on the European equity market brought indecision among investors. Germany's DAX was up 0.29% intraday, France's CAC 40 gained 0.22%, the UK's FTSE 100 lost 0.73% and Poland's WIG20 was down 0.48%.

- Nvidia (NVDA.US) will release its Q4 2024 financial report today after the close of trading on Wall Street. Implied volatility indicates a +/- 10% deviation or a change in the company's capitalisation of approximately USD 166 billion. 

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- On Wall Street, declines continue following the release of the FOMC Minutes. The Nasdaq loses 0.7% intraday, the benchmark S&P500 loses 0.25% and the Russell 2000 is down 0.55%.

- The Fed minutes show that most members are concerned about cutting interest rates too soon, which is a hawkish message. On the other hand, Fed members acknowledge that there is likely to be a review of the balance sheet reduction (QT) programme in March, which is already a dovish statement. 

- The Fed minutes also indicate that interest rates have already peaked and that rate cuts will come when there is more certainty of inflation heading towards target. Bowman of the Fed communicated that lower rates are not a scenario for now.

- In the FX market, the best performing currency at the moment is the Swiss franc. The Japanese yen, on the other hand, is trading under clear downward pressure. The EURUSD pair is trading at 1.0810 after the FOMC Minutes.

- Gold and other precious metals gain immediately after the FOMC Minutes reading. Gold erases early declines and breaks out above the $2025 per ounce zone.

- Natural gas has been gaining strongly in the US since the end of the US trading session on Tuesday, when financial data was shown by several gas-related companies. These companies indicate plans to reduce production, which could reduce oversupply. The price of gas has risen by more than 10% in the last 24 hours. 

- The price of bitcoin slipped below $51,000 again today and Ethereum to $2,900; the cryptocurrencies are extending the downward momentum. Altcoins are also losing heavily.

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