Many don’t notice the stealth war on cash but it’s quite real.
As countries move to negative interest rates the thrust of the policies are to force people to spend. No mattress money allowed thank you. Nations like Japan, Sweden, Denmark and Switzerland have already implemented these policies.
Central Banks are basically charging member banks to hold cash. The superficial belief is to force loan making and spending which will stimulate inflation and growth. The minus rates being applied by the ECB, Denmark, Switzerland, Sweden, and Japan havefailed to juice growth, or stocks, or inflation.
A clear ulterior motive is by eliminating cash, countries will increase tax revenues by negatively effecting the private economy and illegal activities at the same time. A recent move by the ECB is to eliminate the €500 note. This was followed this week by influential economist Larry Summers desires to eliminate the $100 bill. And, so it goes. But clearly the government wishes to squeeze cash transactions.
Stocks were basically flat on the day overcoming early selling. Oil prices fell once again hurting the energy sector.
Market sectors moving higher included: Biotech (IBB), Small Caps (IWM), Brazil (EWZ), Hong Kong (EWH), Thailand (THD) and little else.
Market sectors moving lower included: Most everything else.
Below is the heat map from Finviz reflecting those ETF market sectors moving higher (green) and falling (red). Dependent on the day (green) may mean leveraged inverse or leveraged short (red).
Volume was once again light and breadth per the WSJ was mixed once again.
It was an impressive week for bulls, that’s for sure despite relatively weak volume.
Every dog has its day is all I can say in addition to—where’s the beef! Bulls will need to answer this since next week is heavy with economic data.
Let’s see what happens.
Dave Fry is founder and publisher of ETF Digest and has been covering U.S. and global ETFs since 2001.
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