RJO FuturesCast

October 30, 2020 | Volume 14, Issue 44

The Markets

Metals - Gold Trading Sideways Heading Into Election

Gold futures have not been able to break out of the sideways channel since mid-August. The Congress failed to put together a “stimulus” package that both sides could agree on. Gold traders showed their disappointment by selling gold. Of course, the US Dollar rallied on that same news but fails to hold levels above .9400. At the same time gold is reluctant to trade below $1,850. Now we’re just a hand full of days away from the Election and while I do believe there will likely be a huge whipsaw type of trading event on November 3rd, I also see gold breaking out above $2,000. Fiscal stimulus, Dollar weakness, rising debt and “keep rates low for long” has not gone away! Ultimately gold moves higher. Not to mention that this current environment undoubtedly leads to inflation. There’s no way around it if President Trump does get re-elected. The economy is showing signs of life. The economy will come back. We’re going to look back a year from now and say, “I should’ve bought more gold below $1,900!”

Gold Dec '20 Daily Chart
If you have any questions or would like to discuss the markets further, please feel free to contact me at 800-826-4124 or fcholly@rjofutures.com.
Metals - Silver Waiting on Election

Dec. silver is trading around 23.64, up about 27.0 cents as I write today. A weak US dollar provided a bit of a lift for silver, but silver struggled to hold that gain. It will take a sustained rally to repair the chart damage done to the downside from the technical perspective. Infact a break above 24.50 will be needed to sustain any really and entice bulls to come in. a break below 23.00 will signal more corrective, possibly short-term, price action.

The US election is just a few days away, will there be more volatility? It remains to be seen. There is a lot of price actions anticipated around the US election. In my view, regardless of who wins, markets will be looking to digest any significant type of stimulus to continue to support the economy.

Again, it is impressive that the bears continue to keep silver in check. The more significant problem the US faces will be a deflationary/rescission type of environment, which would be challenging to justify any higher silver prices.

Even with the dollar weakness, the technical still favor the bears.

Silver Weekly Chart
If you have any questions or would like to discuss the markets further, please feel free to contact me at 800-367-7290 or etesfaye@rjofutures.com.
Energy - Oil Sharply Lower on Lockdown Measures

Oil prices are edging lower here in the early session, extending the weeks losses amidst a continuing surge in coronavirus cases throughout Europe and the United States as the market assess the impact on global consumption and fuel demand. France and Germany announced new lockdown measures on Wednesday, souring sentiment and adding to the already fragile demand outlook. OPEC+ are expected to raise output by 2 million bpd in January, despite top producers Russia and Saudi Arabia inclined to maintain the current output of 7.7 million bpd. This comes as Libya has continued to increase production and is expected to reach 1 million bpd in the coming weeks. OPEC+ are scheduled to meet Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 to assess policy. Weekly inventories showed a surprise increase according to the EIA, signaling ample supply despite gasoline consumption continuing to falter.  Despite oil poised for its worst week since April, the volatility of oil is suggesting that the selling could be drying up on any renewed Dollar weakness. The market remains bearish trend with today’s range seen between 35.88 – 39.70. 

Oil Dec '20 Daily Chart
If you have any questions or would like to discuss the markets further, please feel free to contact me at 800-438-4805 or aturro@rjofutures.com.
Softs - Covid-19 Lockdowns, Lack of Demand, Plus Election Moves Cocoa Lower

Looking at a December cocoa contract, traders see the gap formed earlier this week – will that be filled? As we approach the weekend, Ivory Coast’s Presidential election is set to take place. Many people are anticipating political unrest and potential boycotts. As this occurs and supply issues arise from port closure or disruptions, prices continue to move lower.

The eurocurrency remains weak as lockdowns take affect in certain regions. Relief doesn’t appear close to an already demand dependent cocoa market. As new measures are put into place in Europe, demand continues to weaken as we head into a key time of year for the cocoa market. Typically, data from corporations show a boost in demand over he next few months, not during a pandemic though.

The U.S. Presidential election has the global markets on edge, waiting for the results next week will be sure to add movement commodities. Fundamentals will vary from day to day over the next week, but technical levels may hold, look at option strategies to gain limited exposure to the market during an uncertain time.

Cocoa dec '20 Daily Chart
If you have any questions or would like to discuss the markets further, please feel free to contact me at 800-826-4124 or pmooses@rjofutures.com.
Agricultural - Grain Futures Update w/Stephen Davis - 10/30/2020
Stephen Davis discusses the latest news moving the grain markets and things are starting to get quite interesting ahead of Tuesday's election.
Agricultural - Live Cattle Seeing a Nice Rally

Dec cattle, and the cattle market as a whole experienced a nice rally yesterday with the December contract closing at 108.30. If we do get some follow through today, the market will run into some pretty strong resistance at these 108.50 levels. If it breaks though that, with above average volume I would then look go long. What was helping this little rally yesterday was a more stable cash trade, as cash was mixed from lower, unchanged, and higher prices but also the slowdown in production has helped boost prices as well. Exports seemed to have been a bullish report as well as you can see in the numbers below. With increased virus concerns though and potentially more cities and countries shutting down do to COVID, we could see demand drop drastically again resulting to a fall in prices.

The USDA boxed beef cutout was up $1.50 at mid-session yesterday and closed $1.38 higher at $207.17. This was down from $208.86 the previous week. US beef export sales for the week ending October 22 came in at 18,853 tonnes for 2020 delivery and 4,594 for 2021 for 23,447. This was down slightly from the previous week's 24,307 but above the average of the previous four weeks at 21,756. Cumulative sales for 2020 have reached 838,038 tonnes, up from 797,428 last year at this time but down from 840,150 two years ago. The five-year average is 714,885. The largest buyer this week was Japan at 6,907 tonnes for 2020 and 2021 combined, followed by South Korea at 5,258 and China at 4,280. Japan has the largest commitments for 2020 at 242,381 tonnes, followed closely by South Korea at 227,612. China is in sixth place at 47,109. The USDA estimated cattle slaughter came in at 114,000 head yesterday. This brings the total for the week so far to 464,000 head, down from 480,000 last week and 465,000 a year ago.

Live Cattle Dec '20 Daily Chart
Equity - E-mini S&P 500 End of Week Update
Adam provides and end of week update on the S&P 500 and gives insight as to what to expect in the markets with the upcoming election
Equity - Stock Futures Moving with Election

U.S. stock futures are trading lower this morning giving back gains seen on Thursday’s trading. Even with yesterday’s gains, stocks are still poised for a steep decline this week with the S&P down 4.5%, the Dow 5.9%, and Nasdaq 3%. This week’s downturn was mainly due to new coronavirus fears throughout Europe and the U.S. Germany and France has once again taken extreme measures to slow the spread with Germany even imposing a full shutdown for four weeks. In the U.S., almost all states have seen a jump in hospitalizations and deaths creating fear of another shutdown. Even if a shutdown doesn’t occur the fear is slowing spending and activities creating problems for many business sectors. This morning also showed some reports from big tech companies adding concerns to a slowing economy. Apple reported very low sales of its iconic iPhone and Twitter missed its growth estimate to name a few. This will add volatility to the market that will keep rising going into next week’s election.

Support today is 324500 and 320500 with resistance showing 333000 and 337500.

E-mini S&P 500 Dec '20 Daily Chart
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Economy - Futures Market Outlook w/John Caruso - 10/30/2020

“Clouds are not spheres, mountains are not cones, coastlines are not circles, bark is not smooth, nor does lightning travel in a straight line.” – Benoit Mandelbrot

That’s a quote by BM, the father of fractal geometry.  While its human nature to look for linearity in a non-linear world, its just not that simple.  Whether you want to subscribe to chaos theory or fractal geometry theory, there’s certainly many intersections, and both are highly correlated to the current mood of the market.  Yes, this week was most certainly a “risk-off” week in markets, while we’re looking for more stagflation – there’s been plenty of hemming and hawing over that, and I get it.  As we walk a tightrope between the probability of stagflation and risk off Scenario’s, I’ll simply use my market range analysis to help me navigate. 

Thursday Look Back and Technical Outlook posted a 2pm CST

Global Equities

USA: SPY -0.92%, NQ -1.25%, RTY -0.85%
EUR: GER -0.53%, UK -0.30%, FRA +0.09%
Asia: Shanghai -1.47%, KOSP -2.56%

Asian equities are getting pounded overnight, following the USA’s collapse late in the day following big tech earnings, and AAPLs downbeat look on iPhone sales.  A few day’s back, David Einhorn of Greenlight Capital warned in his Q3 letter to investors that “we’re in the midst of an epic tech bubble”. 

Implied Vols remain at strong PREMIUMS – translation: the Street was prepared for this episode of volatility. 

Volatility: The VIX spiked north of 40 this week, and the VXN (Nasdaq Vol) to 43.50.  Is this the beginning of a trend or just another episodic battle with volatility?  We think its likely the latter, as we’ll eventually begin to reposition and “prepare to compare” the y/y data in Q1 2021 vs the Pandemic data of 2020.  But we’re certainly not ready to skip ahead to that chapter just yet. 

Commodities have regained some lost ground, particularly the metals:

Gold +0.50%, Silver +0.90%, Platinum +0.55%

Risk assets got dumped on in a big way this week. The US Dollar reflated 1.0%, and the bond market has broken out into a higher trading range. The mood of the market is certainly that of a different tone than we’ve been trained to subscribe too for the past several months, and the asymmetry of the risk environment that we’re currently in may be like nothing we’ve ever seen before.  Early next week I’ll do a weekly look back on the percentage changes in risk assets and what to prepare for as next week transpires.  Keep calm and carry on, because next week could be a doozy.  An oh yeah, Non-Farm Payrolls is due at the end of next week.  Buckle up.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss the markets further, please feel free to contact me at 800-669-5354 or jcaruso@rjofutures.com.

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