ETF Express: Week Ending 14 July 2023
- Risk assets and leveraged funds (CRYP, GEAR, LNAS, ATEC) dominated the top performers list last week as US CPI cooled significantly, hinting the Federal Reserve’s aggressive rate hikes may have successfully tamed inflation in the short term.
- Precious metals and their miners (MNRS, ETPMAG, GDX) also outperformed, buoying the resources sector overall (QRE, OZR, MVR). Gold and silver prices climbed as bullion traders priced in a weakening US dollar.
- US dollar ETFs and short-equity funds (BEAR, BBOZ, BBUS, SNAS, USD, YANK) were the poorest performers for the week as positive inflation data simultaneously boosted market sentiments and placed pressured on the US dollar.
- There were $447 million in reported inflows, and $71 million in outflows last week, marking a strong week of net inflows for the Australian ETF industry.
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Meta’s Threads Reaches 100 Million Users in Less Than One Week
Social Media and Technology
Meta’s new social media app Threads broke all matter of records as it topped 100 million users within five days of launch, dethroning ChatGPT as the fastest growing online platform.1
Threads is a direct competitor to Elon Musk’s Twitter, with its key differentiator being a safer, more ‘friendly’ environment, according to CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Despite its rapid growth, Threads’ long-term staying power and cultural impact remains uncertain. Though some analysts predict the app has already reached the ‘critical mass’ necessary for organic success, Adam Mosseri, Head of Instagram and Threads Product Lead, remains cautiously optimistic, and said user retention must continue to be assessed.
No small part of Threads’ success (and Twitter’s possible downfall) can be attributed to the clever timing of its release. Threads’ explosive launch came during a week in which Twitter came under scrutiny over its new limited viewing model where non-paying users would be capped at seeing 600 posts a day.2 Twitter’s retail userbase, advertisers and influencers alike protested the changes as reduced post views would affect reach, impression counts, and advertising costs.
Threads is yet to enable any advertising on the platform, with Zuckerberg saying the company would only think about monetisation once there was a clear path to a billion users.3
Nevertheless, brands and celebrities have largely embraced the platform, with many influential figures such as the Kardashians, Oprah and Gordon Ramsay sending their first threads last week.4
- Russian exports are expected to decrease by 100,000 to 200,000 barrels per day from July levels as the country stands by its commitment to cut supplies in coordination with OPEC+ leader Saudi Arabia.5
- WTI Crude dropped below $75 on worries surrounding demand as China’s GDP figures disappointed. The nation’s reported GDP growth of 6.3% failed to meet market expectations for Q2 of 2023.6
- Two major oil fields in Libya that had been shut down in previous weeks due to civil protest have started producing again, easing supply pressures. The re-opening ends a month-long blockade that had halved the OPEC nation’s output and provides the market with a pipeline to 370,000 extra barrels of crude per day.7
- Gold prices may rise as inflation figures have eased significantly in the US.8 The Federal Reserve now have more flexibility with possible rate pauses in the near future, giving non-yielding assets room to breathe and rise in value.
- The US dollar fell to its one-year low as investors priced in easing inflation figures. A weakening dollar may drive gold prices as investor seek a safe-haven asset for storage of value.
- Gold traders remain doubtful on whether the Federal Reserve will end its monetary tightening in the near term.10 Weak growth data in China also weighed on investor sentiment as the top bullion consumer’s economy struggles to find a foothold.11
- Chile’s reduced supply forecast continues to be a concern as demand for copper remains high.12
- China finds difficulty in regaining its economic footing, potentially lowering short-term resource demand.
- Beijing warns stimulus may be muted. The Chinese government has stated that while there will continue to be a focus on growth in sustainable services, any stimuluses for the economy this year will likely be scaled back.13
Forecasts are not guaranteed, and undue reliance should not be placed on them. This information is based on views held by Global X or referenced sources as at 14th July 2023.