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Bank Sector Likely to Show Steadiness as 2020 Presidential Election Cycle Looms

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About a month ago, we analyzed the financial sector where individual banks were considered for investment. This time, we are back to this sector again, since in the current conditions it cannot be ignored. This time, however, we are going to analyze ETFs that include financial sector papers.

When analyzing the S&P 500, there are doubts about its further growth, unless there’s a correction towards 2,400. But in order for such a correction to take place, some significant event must occur that will scare off investors and force them close their positions for a while, locking in profits. The S&P 500 reacts sensitively to the presidential elections and programs adopted by new US leaders.

For example, Barack Obama took over as president during the mortgage crisis, and he had to solve the problems of growing debt, which later exceeded 100% of GDP, and look for new ways to develop the economy after massive bankruptcies of companies. At that time, the S&P 500 lost 67% in 18 months and reached its 2002 lows, which was the result of the dotcom crisis. Later, however, Obama’s administration managed to find a solution by quantitative easing stimulus. The conditions for regulating the financial market, the crisis driver, were tightened, the financial service users protection was strengthened, and measures to reduce taxes, taken under Bush Jr., were prolonged.

As a result, investors calmed down, unemployment began to gradually decline, and the S&P 500 went up to conquer new highs, which continued throughout the 8 years of Barack Obama’s leadership. The only significant correction occurred a year before the start of Obama’s second term, as investors might have decided to hedge and cash off. Nevertheless, once it became clear that Barack Obama would step in for a second term, the S&P 500 rally continued. Thus, during Obama’s administration, the index went up by 314%.

In early 2015, however, the rise ended with a strong resistance at 2,130, which the S&P 500 was able to overcome only after the presidential elections won by Donald Trump. One of Trump’s campaign promises was a substantial tax cut that would allow the US economy to grow more rapidly. Such a strategy means an increase in companies’ profits through tax cuts in order to ensure the release of money for investment in new developments that make the US businesses more efficient and competitive in the global market. At the moment, we can see its positive results: the unemployment rate in the US has fallen to its 10-year low, the S&P 500 is at its historic highs, while the company earnings reports are breaking their own records.

In 2020, the next presidential elections will be held and, as history shows, a year before the market is usually uncertain until it receives confirmation that everything will stay the same. Thus, it will be difficult for the S&P 500 to break out 3,000 at once without a significant correction. There is a very big temptation to take a long position at current prices, as fundamental analysis does not show any negative sentiment in the markets. The companies’ reports, however, have been issued adjusted since Q2 2018, and, besides, as told above, tax cuts are a great contribution to an increase in profits. In this situation, it is important to pay attention to the rise in sales, and not to profits as such, since the earnings do not show how the companies are truly doing. Earnings and profits are worth taking into account only after Q2 2019 when it will be a year after the new accounting system has been implemented.

Take Facebook for example: the stock price has been down since the Q2 report, while the earnings hit the record high. In the Q3 report, the revenue was even higher, but the stock is still down, just because high profits are no longer a positive indicator. The investors want to see many more new users, while the number is actually decreasing.

Thus, over the next 6 months, the S&P is likely to trade rangebound. Then, the presidential elections will be drawing nearer, adding more pressure to the market because of the uncertainty.

Overall, the financial sector looks less risky, as, with good earnings, it will feel great, but even in case the earnings are not so good, companies will still have to pay their debts to the banks. In addition, the Fed is very likely to continue rate hikes, which will lead to an additional profit flow.

An unexpected crisis may be the only negative factor here, but in this case any investment will be in the red.

Among financial ETFs, one may consider a few funds with over $1M managed money.

iShares US Financial Services ETF (IYF), $1.77B managed, 35% in the banking services sector, 12% in the investment banking sector.

If we break down the banking sector, the top three are JPMorgan Chase (7.13%), Bank of America (5.00%), and Wells Fargo (4.47%).

In the investment banking, 8.32% accounts for the Warren Edward Buffett Berkshire Hathaway Fund.

The next one is iShares US Financial Services ETF (IYG), with $1.7B managed. The banking sector accounts for 52.83% of the fund’s portfolio. The top three are JPMorgan Chase (12.36%), Bank of America (8.66%), and Wells Fargo (7.75%).

Yet another fund one may pay attention to is Fidelity MSCI Financials Index ETF (FNCL), with $1.27B managed. The banking sector accounts for 51.71% of the fund’s portfolio. The top three are again JPMorgan Chase (9.84%), Bank of America (7.05%), and Wells Fargo (6.42%). This fund, as well as the iShares US Financial Services ETF (IYF) has a Berkshire Hathaway investment in its portfolio (7.30%).

By Dmitriy Gurkovsky, Chief Analyst at RoboMarkets

Disclaimer
Any predictions contained herein are based on the authors’ particular opinion. This analysis shall not be treated as trading advice. RoboMarkets shall not be held liable for the results of the trades arising from relying upon trading recommendations and reviews contained herein.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.6 stars on average, based on 21 rated postsHaving majored in both Social Psychology and Economics, I went on to continue my education in post graduate. Later I worked as a team lead of a tech and fundamental analysis lab in the Applied System Analysis Research Institute. This helped me to acquire all necessary skills and experience to become a successful trader and analyst, as well as a portfolio manager in an investment company. I'm a pro in the financial field and the author of articles for various international media. I also hold the position of Chief Analyst at RoboMarkets.




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Analysis

XRP/USD Price Analysis: Israel’s Largest Financial Services Company GMT Partnering with Ripple

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  • Ripple has another large financial firm leveraging its technology, as the list keeps on growing.
  • XRP/USD will search for buyers within $0.3000-$0.2500 range initially, ahead of possible $0.2000 return.
  • XRP/BTC looks surprisingly encouraging, subject to a potential breakout to the upside.

XRP in line with the rest of its peers across the cryptocurrency market remains firmly on the back foot. XRP/USD is running at its third consecutive session of losses. At the time of writing, the pair has dropped 7% over this mentioned period. A renewed wave of selling pressure hit the market after the price was allowed some time to consolidate. The market was very much within range-bound mode, before the bears struck again. As a result, XRP has firmly given up the $0.3000 mark.

Israel’s GMT to Utilize Ripple Technology

The largest financial services organization in Israel, GMT, has announced a partnership with Ripple. They will be utilizing Ripple’s technology for their cross-boarder payments.

GMT said via their latest blog update: “GMT is joining companies like MoneyGram, AmericanExpress, CIBC, Earthport, AKBANK and many more, who are already authorized to use Ripple’s platform. This partnership is establishing GMT’s place in the forefront of the Israeli Fintech industry, also allowing us to work side by side with some of the leading companies in the world.”

GMT are the largest and leading financial services organization in Israel. They have an outreach of  250 branches spanning across the country. GMT specialize in local and international remittance services, among many other financial offerings.

In terms of which technology of Ripple’s they will exactly be leveraging, it does not appear to have been stated for now. Whether GMT will be using either xCurrent or xRapid is still subject to debate. Hacked will be sure to provide further details upon those being announced.

Technical Review – XRP/USD

XRP/USD 4-hour chart

Price behavior seems to be quite readable of late. XRP/USD is going through periods of hard selling, which is then followed by some range-bound trading. Once again, bears breakout from this consolidation mode to ignite more downside pressure. Between the 7th and 14th December, XRP/USD had formed a range-block. The sellers came piling in on the 14th December, and as a result the recent range was broken with $0.3000 giving way.

XRP/USD weekly chart

XRP/USD is now moving within a critical area. This is seen running from $0.3000 to $0.2500.  A very well-known area for big buyers coming in, as proven on occasions this year. Any failure of this initial range holding could see a free-fall down to $0.2000.

XRP/BTC daily chart

Finally, looking the daily chart of XRP/BTC, it remains somewhat encouraging. XRP is holding its ground again BTC, in comparison to many of its peers. The price is ranging for now, looking possible to see a chunky breakout to the upside. It remains trading around levels seen during the explosive run in December 2017.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 86 rated postsKen has over 8 years exposure to the financial markets. During a large part of his career, he worked as an analyst, covering a variety of asset classes; forex, fixed income, commodities, equities and cryptocurrencies. Ken has gone on to become a regular contributor across several large news and analysis outlets.




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Analysis

Stellar Price Analysis: XLM/USD Bears Break Big $0.10 Level

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  • Fear and panic spreads as XLM takes out another big psychological level, $0.10.
  • Support of XLM continues to take place, as AlphaPoint and CoinField announce support.

Stellar’s native token XLM has been a real victim of this heavy market selling pressure. The downward trend is very much stubborn and showing lack of a shift in sentiment anytime soon. Market hopes have been dashed on numerous occasions, when the price has looked like bottoming. Each small bounce and sign of possible recovery from the bulls continues to be sold with force by the bears.

Like several of XLM’s peers, fundamental developments remain strong. There is still much in terms of positive developments surrounding the Stellar foundation. However, with the pressing lower and breaking of these key psychological levels, it only sparks more panic and fear with market participants.

XLM Support Spreads

XLM continues to be added by exchanges globally. There is certainly no shortage with the supporting developments for Stellar Lumens. This week, AlphaPoint, a white label cryptocurrency exchange platform, announced their collaboration with the Stellar foundation. They will now be supporting Lumens for their clients, covering; deposits, withdrawals, custody, and trading.

Elsewhere, CoinField, a Canadian cryptocurrency exchange, detailed via Twitter that they are launching Stellar Lumens on their platform, as an XRP based pair. They noted that the XLM/XRP pair will be available with other fiat pairings, including; USD, CAD, EUR, GBP, JPY, and AED.

Technical Review – XLM/USD

XLM/USD 4-hour chart

The bears most recently pressed for a devastating technical development as the $0.10 mark was broken to the downside, which was previously anticipated via the last article posted on Hacked. Sideways trading had initially been observed, for seven sessions, as XLM/USD formed a range-block. This technically was vulnerable to an extensive breakout south.

A bottom area was eyed at the low of 7th December at $0.1010. This was breached after sellers were penetrating the supporting area during the session of 14th December. As a result, this forced the low of the 7th December to be exposed. In addition, it caused a drop below the psychological $0.10 level.

XLM/BTC Vital Demand Zone

XLM/BTC daily chart

XLM/BTC at the time of writing is trading within a vital demand zone. This can be seen tracking from 0.00003000 to 0.00002800. Previously, the area has proven to see chunky buyers come into play in driven the price back north. As already seen this year, on two occasions, in July and also September, both going on to see around 45% bull rallies.

Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading.

Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.5 stars on average, based on 86 rated postsKen has over 8 years exposure to the financial markets. During a large part of his career, he worked as an analyst, covering a variety of asset classes; forex, fixed income, commodities, equities and cryptocurrencies. Ken has gone on to become a regular contributor across several large news and analysis outlets.




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Analysis

Forex Update: Dismal Chinese Data Causes Turmoil in Markets

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Forex Market Snapshot

Asset Current Value Daily Change
EUR/USD 1.1302 -0.47%
GBP/USD 1.2571 -0.68%
USD/JPY 113.35 -0.21%
AUD/USD 0.7179 -0.66%
GOLD 1,243 -0.20%
WTI Crude Oil 51.16 -3.18%
BTC/USD 3,180 -2.54%

We continue to have an unusually active December in traditional financial markets, as the recent bearish shift, the continued Brexit woes and the slowing global economy add up to a very nervous trading environment. Volatility is especially high in stock markets compared to seasonal averages but currencies are also having very active days, with the Dollar clearly being in focus.

Today we had negative headlines in China with both industrial production and retail sales missing the consensus estimates by a mile, and the history of manufactured economic releases from the country makes that even scarier.

It’s no surprise that the Chinese stock market is leading the way lower globally, while the Chinese Yuan is also among the weakest currencies globally, even amid the improving trade-related sentiment. Risk-on currencies got it hard today, and the Dollar is defying its bearish seasonality, trading very close to its recent lows, confirming the broad risk-off shift.

Technical Analysis

GBP/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The Great British Pound continues to trade with pronounced relative weakness, and as Prime Minister Theresa May was sent home empty-handed from Brussels, with the leaders of the EU refusing to renegotiate the draft Brexit plan, the currency’s position just got even shakier.

From a technical standpoint, the Cable confirmed the key breakdown with a failed pullback in the past couple of days, and with no major support found above the generational lows near 1.20, long-term odds now favor a test of that zone, and bulls shouldn’t enter positions below the key 1.27 level.

EUR/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The EUR/USD pair dipped below the 1.13 level after yesterday’s the dovish growth and inflation forecast by the European Central Bank and today’s strong US Retail Sales report. The US economy continues to perform relatively well compared to its global peers, and although we think that the slowdown will eventually reach the US, the fiscal stimulus and the labor momentum could keep the engines going for a while.

That only adds to the buying pressure which is pushing the USD higher, and the troubles in the European financial system are also mounting, which could lead to another leg lower in the common currency next year. The main technical levels to watch are still the 1.12 support and the 1.1440 resistance, and with the broader downtrend clearly being intact in the most traded currency pair.

AUD/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

The AUD/USD pair fell below the bearish wedge pattern on the negative Chinese news as we expected, and it’s now testing the 0.7165 support zone. A move towards the 0.70 level is likely in the coming weeks, should the pair violate the support zone, and the short-term trend change is close to being confirmed, while the broader downtrend is clearly intact, with strong resistance ahead near 0.7250 and 0.74.

WTI Crude Oil, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Another rally attempt faded away today in crude oil, and the crucial commodity continues to trade in a bearish consolidation range following the series of dead-cat-bounces. The top of the range is found near the $54.25 per barrel price level, while strong support is found in the $49.50-$50 per barrel range.

Given the deeply oversold long-term momentum readings, bulls can open speculative long positions near the bottom of the range, despite the clearly intact long-term downtrend, while bears should wait for a larger scale bounce to reenter the market.

Key Economic Events on Monday

ChartBook

Forex

USD/JPY, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

EUR/GBP, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

EUR/JPY, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

AUD/JPY, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

GBP/JPY, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

USD/CHF, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

USD/CNH, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Commodities

Gold Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Copper Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Major Stock Indices

S&P 500 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

DAX 30 Index CFD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Nikkei 225 Futures, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Shanghai Composite Index CFD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis

Featured image from Shutterstock

Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink.

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4.7 stars on average, based on 417 rated postsTrader and financial analyst, with 10 years of experience in the field. An expert in technical analysis and risk management, but also an avid practitioner of value investment and passive strategies, with a passion towards anything that is connected to the market.




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