U.S. Equity Markets bounced around to start the week, finishing the day mixed as the Dow tested all-time highs to close with a gain of 0.60% while the Small Cap Russell 2000 closed 2.83% lower. Markets declined in the early morning before recovering throughout the day. There was some uncertainty around the U.S.’s relationship with China, after U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said the White House is open to trade negotiations with China, but it won’t be removing tariffs in the near future. There were also worries about a leveraged trade unwind, as Credit Suisse and Nomura both warned of large losses related to hedge funds liquidating certain positions. But vaccine news was positive after the Biden administration said it will have administered 240 million COVID-19 vaccinations by the end of this month. That is enough to inoculate roughly half of the eligible population. Now, eyes turn to Biden’s infrastructure and jobs announcement later this week, which could come in as large as $4 trillion, according to a report from the Washington Post. While this will be hard to push through Congress, any infrastructure bill would help boost economic output. European Markets closed higher, led by the German DAX. European Central Bank Chief Economist Philip Lane said it must remain committed to ensuring favorable financing conditions to support economic growth. German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on the heads of the country’s 16 states to introduce strict social-distancing measures to bring a recent rise in coronavirus infections under control. Italy’s government lowered its growth outlook for 2021, citing the recent lockdowns. But it also boosted its growth forecast for 2022. European Union coronavirus vaccinations rose to 67.7 million yesterday, with a daily average of 1.5 million doses administered over the last week. Elsewhere, Bitcoin surged 7.71% after Visa announced that it would soon settle some transactions in cryptocurrency, while Gold fell 1.33% on Dollar strength.
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