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Top 5 things that moved markets this past week

Stock MarketsMay 19, 2017 04:52PM ET
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© Reuters. What will next week bring? – Take a peek at the top 5 things that rocked U.S. markets this week.

The Trump Dumpof 2017

U.S. stocks suffered their worst decline of 2017 on Wednesday, as investors fled risk assets amid reports that President Trump asked the then-FBI Director James Comey to shut down an investigation into the actions of former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn.

The Dow was the worst offender, losing 370 points, or 1.78%, while both the NASDAQ and S&P 500 fell more than 1.5%. The three main U.S. indexes ended the week in negative.

Gold notched best week since April

Investors piled into safe-haven assets such as gold, in the wake of continued political pressure engulfing President Trump, as they feared that the ongoing political saga in Washington could dampened President Trump's ability to deliver on his economic agenda.

Gold futures gained roughly 2% for the week, as the precious metal notched its best weekly performance in five weeks.

Oil prices settled above the key $50 level

Crude futures extended their weekly winning streak to two, settling above the key $50 price level on Friday amid growing expectations that OPEC members will extend supply cuts for a prolonged period.

Algerian Energy Minister, Noureddine Boutarfa, said on Thursday, most OPEC members support Saudi Arabia and Russia’s proposal to prolong the production cuts to March next year, and that the rate of compliance should increase.

Sterling hit September highs

The pound suffered a mini ‘flash crash’ against the dollar in late trade Thursday, dropping to $1.2888. The move was not linked to any significant economic data.

The dip in the pound was brief, however, as GBP/USD recovered to trade above $1.30, its highest level since September, as investors cheered data, which showed UK retail sales grew faster than expected in April.

The dollar dived to six-month lows

Political uncertainty weighed on the greenback during the week, erasing most of the gains achieved since President Trump’s election, in the wake of growing doubts on whether Trump would be able to deliver on his pro-growth economic agenda, which includes tax reform and deregulation.

The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback’s strength against a trade-weighted basket of six major currencies, fell by more than 0.70% on Friday.

Top 5 things that moved markets this past week

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