03 January 2018


US stocks closed higher on Tuesday led by gains in the technology and energy sector as investor sentiment on equities remained bullish.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher at 24823.64. The S&P 500 closed 0.83% higher, while the Nasdaq Composite closed at 7006.90, up 1.50%.

US stocks made a positive start to the year amid expectations that solid economic growth would continue, raising the prospect of strong corporate earnings. The prospect of another year of bullish growth offset investor concerns over fresh geopolitical uncertainty.

Reports that China was mobilizing forces on its border with North Korea and continued rioting in Iran had briefly halted the rally but the latter raised the prospect of fresh oil supply disruptions supporting an uptick in energy stocks, lifting the broader index higher.

Also supporting the move higher in equities was an economic report showing final December manufacturing purchasing managers index rose to 55.1 from 53.9 in November.

On the corporate front, Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT) closed 3.6% higher following a report from Loup ventures’ analyst Gene Munter who suggested that the retailer could be bought by Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN).

The upbeat start to the year for US stocks comes as earnings season draws closer with the financials set to report earnings on Dec. 12.

‘Bulls and Bears’ on Wall Street

The top Dow gainers for the session: Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) up 4%, General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) up 3% and Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) corp up 1.9%

The Travelers Companies Inc (NYSE:TRV) down 2.7%, Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) down 14.4%, and Home Depot Inc (NYSE:HD) down 0.8%, were among the worst Dow performers of the session.


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03 January 2018


Bitcoin’s dominance of the cryptocurrency market has fallen to its lowest ever level due to growing interest in alternative digital currencies.

On Tuesday, bitcoin’s market capitalization was $231.7 billion, around 36% of the total value of all cryptocurrencies, its lowest ever market share. At the start of 2017, its market share stood at over 80%.

The digital currency had risen around twentyfold since the start of 2017, climbing from less than $1,000 to as high as $19,891 on 17 December on Bitfinex and to more than $20,000 on other exchanges.

However, it has posted heavy declines since, falling as low as $10,718 on December 22, before rebounding to over $13,000.

Bitcoin was trading at $13,557.00 by 08:06 AM ET (01:06 GMT) on the Bitfinex exchange, after touching a low of $12,810.00 earlier.

While bitcoin investors believe the decline was a natural correction after a breath-taking rise in 2017 there have been warnings of an asset bubble from market regulators and central banks.

In late December, Morgan Stanley analysts warned that the real value of bitcoin could “be zero.”

Researchers noted that if bitcoin is not accepted as a rival to the U.S. dollar and other fiat currencies, then it is literally worth nothing.

Ripple, the second most valuable cryptocurrency by market cap after bitcoin, was trading at $2.08 on the Poloniex exchange after touching a record high of $2.39 on Saturday.

Ripple’s market cap rose more than 50% on Friday. Its market value continued to climb over the weekend, peaking at over $100 billion, knocking Ethereum into third place after bitcoin, with a market cap of $85 billion.

Ripple rose in value by more than 32,000% over the course of 2017. It began the year trading at around $0.006 and ended at $1.98.

Ripple’s gains in 2017 outstripped the gains of Ethereum and bitcoin, which rose by roughly 9,000% and 1,400%, respectively.


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