January in Figures
January 30, 2016
January 2016 was an extremely volatile month in world financial markets. Oil set the tone, with West Texas Intermediate crude plunging almost 31% in the first three weeks to a low of $26.19 before trimming that loss by more than half. Beyond mid-month, stock prices in the U.S. were headed for a record January dive. Even with sharp gains on the final business day of the month, losses of more than 5.0% occurred in the United States, much of continental Europe, and Japan. The rally on January 29th was triggered by announcement from the Bank of Japan that policymakers had narrowly voted to introduce a negative interest rate to complement its aggressive asset buying program. This decision arguably delivered the most electrifying central bank surprise since the Swiss National Bank suddenly ended the franc ceiling rate against the euro a year earlier.
A substantial part of January’s decline in sovereign debt yields shown below happened on the final day. The dollar registered broad additional gains in January against the Swiss franc, sterling, commodity-sensitive currencies, and Chinese yuan, but net appreciation relative to the yen and euro was modest. Three-month deposit rates were little changed over January.
|10-Yr Yield||12/31/15||01/29/16||Chg vs End-2015|
|U.S.||2.27%||1.92%||-35 Basis Points|
|3-month rates||12/31/15||01/29/16||Chg vs End-2015|
|U.S.||0.61%||0.62%||+1 Basis Point|
|FX||12/31/15||01/29/16||Pct Chg in $|
|Equities||12/31/15||01/29/16||Chg vs End-2015|
|Commodities||12/31/15||01/29/16||Chg v End-2015|
|Oil, $ per barrel||37.84||33.62||-11.2%|
|Gold, $ per ounce||1068.30||1116.40||+4.5%|
Copyright Larry Greenberg 2016. All rights reserved. No secondary distribution without express permission.