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Today in the Market (3/9/2022)

Good Evening. Concerns over the impact of actions taken against Russia by countries and firms weighed on U.S. equity markets on Wednesday.  However, stocks did recoup some losses following a tumultuous start to the week.

In afternoon trading, the S&P 500 closed up  2.57%. The DOW closed 2.00% higher and The NASDAQ went up by 3.59%.  Not a bad day.

COMMODITIES

In an interview with Bloomberg Television, a Ukrainian foreign policy assistant to President Zelenskiy said the government was “ready for a diplomatic solution.” Prices for West Texas intermediate and Brent crude oil both fell Wednesday afternoon.

“Our first and foremost pre-condition for having such kind of negotiations is immediate cease-fire and withdrawal of Russian troops,” Ihor Zhovkva, deputy chief of staff to Zelenskiy, told Bloomberg. He added, however, that Ukraine would not trade “a single inch” of Ukrainian territory to Russia.  Furthermore, he noted that Ukraine will continue to pursue NATO membership.

In an interview with German news outlet Bild TV on Wednesday, Zelenskiy maintained his belief that “only direct talks between the two presidents can stop this war,” alluding to meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin. For the time being, Zelenskiy has not had direct contact with Putin.

Brent crude oil prices fell more than 12% to just over $112 per barrel.  West Texas Intermediate crude oil prices fell to just over $111 per barrel.

CRYPTOCURRENCY

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The White House announced President Biden’s executive order on Wednesday, which establishes a framework for departments to research and develop a government-wide strategy for cryptocurrency regulation.

Following the announcement, which had been rumored for weeks, bitcoin values soared nearly 10% to reach $42,000. According to Yahoo Finance’s Jennifer Schonberger, the executive order was supposed to be signed last month but was postponed due to the Russia-Ukraine situation.

One of the order’s main pillars is that the government investigate the possibility of a central bank digital currency(CBDC).

 According to the White House, “the order directs the U.S. Government to assess the technological infrastructure and capacity needs for a potential U.S. CBDC in a manner that protects Americans’ interests.” Furthermore, “The Order also encourages the Federal Reserve to continue its research, development, and assessment efforts for a U.S. CBDC, including development of a plan for broader U.S. Government action in support of their work.”

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