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Pro-XRP lawyer John Deaton has tipped less than a 3% chance for the United States Securities and Exchange Commission to score an outright win against Ripple, as an end to the long-running lawsuit draws closer.
The CryptoLaw founder has been a vocal advocate for Ripple against the SEC, which filed a lawsuit against the company in December 2020, alleging that the sale of its XRP $0.53 token represented an unregistered securities offering.
In a June 3 episode of The Good Morning Crypto podcast, Deaton said he tipped a 25% chance that presiding U.S. District Judge Torres rules in outright favor of Ripple, and a 50% chance that Ripple claims victory by way of a “splitting the baby” ruling.
This refers to Judge Torress “drawing a line in the sand,” where she could potentially rule that XRP was offered as an unregistered security before 2018. However, in the wake of the Hinman documents — which refer to internal SEC messages related to a 2018 speech given by former SEC Director William Hinman — it’s possible that cryptocurrencies can transition from securities to commodities once they become sufficiently decentralized.
“I think that XRP itself is going to be deemed not a security and that I think that secondary market sales show comment. Even if [Judge Torres] does rule finding that Ripple violated the law, that doesn't apply to secondary market sales,” Deaton explained.
While Ripple executives including its CEO Brad Garlinghouse have long been predicting an imminent end to the rollercoaster lawsuit from SEC, Deaton highlighted that Judge Torres will most likely come to a final decision before Sept. 30 this year.
Deaton brought attention to what he called a “six-month list” that district judges must file to Congress. The list details all of the summary judgements that have been pending for longer than six months. It gets published on the last day of March and the last day of September.
“She [Judge Torres] has never been on this list. It’s like a public shame list that says ‘look I’m shitty at my job.’”
Additionally, Deaton also gave his predictions for the price of Ripple’s native XRP token following a positive ruling.
Investing.com - U.S. stock futures were trading in a mixed fashion during Sunday's evening trade after major benchmark averages closed out the holiday-shortened week higher as stronger than expected nonfarm payrolls data boosted investor sentiment, while President Joe Biden signed the debt ceiling bill into law over the weekend in order to avoid an impending U.S. default.
By 7:40pm ET (11:40pm GMT) Dow Jones Futures were up 0.1%, S&P 500 Futures eased 0.1% and Nasdaq 100 Futures dipped 0.3%.
In the week ahead, key economic events to be watched by investors include Markit and ISM Services PMIs, factory orders, trade balance, and the Fed's balance sheet.
During Friday's trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 701.2 points or 2.1% to 33,762.8, the S&P 500 lifted in 61.4 points or 1.5% to 4,282.4 and the NASDAQ Composite lifted 139.8 points or 1.1% to 13,240.8.
Among earnings, companies including Science Applications International Corp (NYSE:SAIC), Sprinklr Inc (NYSE:CXM), Ferguson Plc (NYSE:FERG), Campbell Soup Company (NYSE:CPB), GameStop Corp (NYSE:GME), DocuSign Inc (NASDAQ:DOCU) and Toro Co (NYSE:TTC) are scheduled to release quarterly results throughout the week.
Investing.com-- Gold prices fell slightly on Monday amid uncertainty over whether the Federal Reserve will hold interest rates steady later this month, while concerns over weakening economic growth pulled copper prices down.
The yellow metal fell on Friday after U.S. nonfarm payrolls data read much stronger than expected for May, which posited a hawkish outlook for the Fed as it moves to bring down high inflation.
But some Fed officials also suggested last week that the central bank may hold rates steady in June, as it gauges the impact of its monetary tightening measures on the economy over the past year.
Regardless of its decision in June, the central bank is most likely to keep rates higher for longer- a scenario that bodes poorly for non-yielding assets such as gold. Strength in the dollar, on the prospect of elevated interest rates, weighed on bullion prices on Monday.
Increased risk appetite, after the U.S. government passed a bill to raise the debt ceiling, also kept investors out of risk-averse assets such as gold.
Spot gold fell slightly to $1,947.89 an ounce, while gold futures fell 0.3% to $1.963.90 an ounce by 21:14 ET (01:14 GMT). Both instruments were trading close to over two-month lows.
Fed Fund futures prices show that markets are pricing in a nearly 80% chance the Fed will keep rates steady in June. But given that recent inflation and labor data read above market expectations, the bank may still hike rates further.
Gold is still expected to benefit from increased safe haven demand this year, especially as global economic conditions worsen amid pressure from high interest rates.
But this notion weighed heavily on copper prices, which retreated on Monday. Copper futures fell 0.4% to $3.7180 a pound.
A string of weak economic readings from the U.S., Euro Zone and China had battered copper prices in recent weeks, pulling them to six-month lows as markets feared a slowdown in demand for the red metal.
Focus this week is on more cues from the world’s largest economies, including trade data from China and U.S. service sector activity.
Investing.com-- Most Asian currencies retreated on Monday, while the dollar traded near two-month highs amid uncertainty over whether the Federal Reserve would hike interest rates in June, with focus now turning to central bank meetings in India and Australia this week.
The dollar advanced in Asian trade, with the dollar index and dollar index futures adding about 0.1% each. Both instruments were also close to two-month highs as data on Friday showed nonfarm payrolls jumped far more than expected in May, pointing to a robust U.S. labor market.
The reading, coupled with stronger-than-expected print on the Fed’s preferred inflation index earlier in May, presented a hawkish outlook for the central bank in June.
But a slew of Fed officials touted the possibility of a pause in rate hikes this month, calling on the Fed to take stock of its year-long rate hike crusade against inflation. This brewed some uncertainty over how the central bank may act next week, especially given that other facets of the U.S. economy appear to be slowing.
Still, the central bank is widely expected to keep rates higher for longer, which presents more headwinds to risk-heavy Asian markets.
China’s yuan fell 0.2%, moving back towards a six-month low following a weak daily midpoint fix from the People’s Bank. The currency took little support from a private survey showing stronger-than-expected growth in China’s services sector, given that overall economic activity still remained under pressure.
Focus this week is on Chinese trade and inflation data for more cues on Asia’s largest economy, as it struggles to recover from three years of COVID disruptions. A swathe of mixed economic readings for May pointed to slowing momentum in the economy after a strong start to the year.
Markets are also awaiting central bank meetings in Australia and India this week, although both banks are expected to keep rates steady after sharp hikes over the past year. But there also exists a slim chance of a rate hike from the Reserve Bank of Australia, given that inflation unexpectedly rose in April.
The Indian rupee was flat, while the Australian dollar fell 0.3%.
Waning safe haven demand, after the passing of a bill to raise the U.S. debt ceiling, pushed the Japanese yen back to the 140 level to the dollar, while disappointing service sector activity data for May also weighed.
The Thai baht was the worst performer in Asia, down 0.7% amid continued uncertainty over the formation of a new government in the country.
Investing.com - The U.S. dollar gained in early European trading Wednesday after weak Chinese activity data hit risk sentiment, while the U.S. debt ceiling deal cleared an important hurdle.
At 03:55 ET (07:55 GMT), the Dollar Index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six other currencies, rose 0.2% to 104.300, just below the two-month high of 104.420 seen earlier in the week.
Data released earlier Wednesday showed that Chinese manufacturing activity shrank for a second consecutive month in May, and at a sharper pace than the prior month.
This weakness in the important manufacturing sector, which is a key driver of local growth, meant that overall growth in business activity in the world’s second-largest economy also contracted, hitting risk sentiment to the benefit of the safe haven dollar.
USD/CNY rose 0.3% to 7.0979, with the yuan falling to a six-month low after crossing the 7.1 level for the first time since late November.
The bill to suspend the $31.4 trillion U.S. debt ceiling advanced late Tuesday when the Republican-controlled House Rules Committee voted 7-6 to advance it to the floor of the House of Representatives for a vote on Wednesday.
This makes a disastrous U.S. default less likely, but could also embolden the Federal Reserve to continue raising interest rates as inflation remains elevated, further helping the dollar.
Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland President Loretta Mester said on Wednesday, in an interview with the Financial Times, that she sees no "compelling" reason to wait to implement another interest rate hike.
Elsewhere, EUR/USD fell 0.5% to 1.0685 after the German state of North Rhine Westphalia, the most populous state in the country, recorded an annual inflation rate of 5.7% in May, considerably below the 6.8% expected and the revised prior number of 6.7%.
This news, coupled with Tuesday’s drop in Spanish consumer prices, support the European Central Bank officials who say the continent’s historic price spike is fading and interest-rate increases can soon end.
The other German states are also due to release their CPI data later Wednesday, culminating in a national figure, along with French and Italian numbers, ahead of Thursday’s eurozone release.
GBP/USD fell 0.2% to 1.2384, following a 0.4% gain the previous day, while AUD/USD dropped 0.4% to 0.6494, with the Aussie dollar weighed by the weak Chinese PMI numbers even as Australian data showed consumer inflation moved back towards 30-year highs in April.
USD/JPY traded 0.2% lower to 139.47, having climbed as high as 140.93 in the previous session before a report indicated that Japanese officials "will closely watch currency market moves and respond appropriately as needed."
(Reuters) - Oil prices extended losses early on Wednesday as worries of slowing demand from top oil importer China after the release of weaker-than-expected economic data outweighed some positive progress on the U.S. debt ceiling bill.
Brent crude futures for August delivery slipped 15 cents to $73.56 a barrel by 0656 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (WTI) fell 14 cents to $69.32 a barrel, with earlier gains reversed after China manufacturing data was released. Both benchmarks fell by more than 4% on Tuesday.
Brent's July contract, which expires on Wednesday, and the U.S. benchmark were on track for monthly declines of more than 7% and 9%, respectively.
China's manufacturing activity contracted faster than expected in May on weakening demand, with the official manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) down to 48.8 from 49.2 in April. The outcome lagged a forecast of 49.4.
"With China's industrial output and fixed-asset investment growing more slowly than expected last month, markets are worried that China's commodity demand is weakening more quickly than anticipated," said Vivek Dhar, director of commodities research at Commonwealth Bank of Australia (OTC:CMWAY).
"The current pessimism surrounding China's commodity demand stands in contrast to the optimism at the beginning of this year," he added.
In the U.S., trader sentiment remained cautious despite legislation brokered by President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy to lift the $31.4 trillion U.S. debt ceiling and achieve new federal spending cuts passed an important hurdle late on Tuesday, advancing to the full House of Representatives for debate and an expected vote on passage on Wednesday.
"Depending on how the voting goes on through the rest of the week, we can expect bullish or bearish impact likewise on the oil market, but traders will be cautious ahead of newsflow," said Suvro Sakar, DBS Bank's lead energy analyst.
The debt deadline nearly coincides with the June 4 meeting of OPEC+ - the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia. Market participants had mixed views on whether the group would increase output cuts as a slump in prices weighs on the market.
Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Abdulaziz bin Salman last week warned short sellers betting oil prices would fall to "watch out" in a possible signal that OPEC+ may cut output.
However, comments from Russian oil officials and sources, including Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak, indicate the world's third-largest oil producer is leaning toward leaving output unchanged.
"As far as the OPEC+ meeting, again the market has no clear idea on what surprises may be in store this time around, but mostly 'no change' is priced in at the moment," Sakar said.
If Brent prices decline again towards $70 per barrel, OPEC may be forced to look at ways to further support the market, he added.
Izumi Serita, general manager of Cosmo Oil's crude oil and tanker department, said she expected OPEC+ would keep the current output reduction, but the group might weigh in on demand weakness given oil futures are around the levels at which voluntary cuts were triggered last month.
In April, Saudi Arabia and other members of OPEC+ announced further oil output cuts of around 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd), bringing the total volume of cuts by OPEC+ to 3.66 million bpd, according to Reuters calculations.
Meantime, Saudi oil giant Saudi Aramco (TADAWUL:2222) may further slash the official selling prices for all crude grades to Asia in July by $1 a barrel, the lowest since November 2021, a Reuters poll showed.
Investing.com -- Gold bulls are still counting on another record high if the Chicken Little metaphor of saving the world — or more precisely, the U.S. economy, from a government debt default or recession — doesn’t come true. Yet, the path of least resistance for the yellow metal over the past three weeks has been lower.
Gold for June delivery on New York’s Comex settled Friday’s session at $1,944.30 an ounce, up just 60 cents, or 0.03%, on the day. The benchmark gold futures contract fell to a nine-week low of $1,936.90 earlier in the session, after hitting an all-time high of $2,085.40 on May 4. For the week, June gold was off 2% after another 2% loss the prior week and 0.25% the week before that.
The spot price of gold, which reflects physical trades in bullion and is more closely followed than futures by some traders, was at $1,945.04 by 14:00 ET (18:00 GMT) on Friday, up $4.19, or 0.2% on the day. Spot gold fell to a three-week low of $1,936.85 during the session, after a record high of $2,073.29 earlier this month, according to Investing.com data. For the week, spot gold was down 1.7%, after another 1.7% loss the prior week and 0.3% the week before that.
“The short term trend has turned bearish and unless we see signs of a rebound, which requires strong acceptance above the 38.2% Fibonacci level of $1,975 on a weekly closing basis, a further drop to 61.8% Fibonacci level $1,910 can hardly be ruled out,” said Sunil Kumar Dixit, chief technical strategist at SKCharting.com.
“But there's a possibility of gold buyers resurfacing at the test of $1,926 and $1,910 if gold drops to this zone,” Dixit added.
Craig Erlam, analyst at online trading platform OANDA, was also in the camp of a cracked upside for gold that wasn’t entirely broken.
“Gold’s rough week is ending as some investors seek protection in case debt ceiling talks hit a major roadblock at the 11th hour,” Erlam said. “It is crunch time for [Washington] DC and a possible TARP scenario [from 2008] could occur when Congress initially failed to pass the bank bailout program, which is why some traders are running to gold ahead of the long weekend. If it weren’t for another round of hawkish [inflation] data, gold would be finishing the week on a much stronger note.”
President Joe Biden declared Thursday the United States would avoid a disastrous credit default even as lawmakers went on a 10-day break without a deal on raising the nation's borrowing limit to keep paying the bills. There are seven days until June 1 -- the earliest possible point when the government estimates it could run out of money to service its debts -- and missed loan repayments would likely spark a recession, roiling world markets. But members of the House of Representatives began hitting the road for the Memorial Day recess after their final vote Thursday morning and are not due to return until June 4.
“Gold is in the danger zone as optimism remains that a debt-ceiling standoff will be resolved and as U.S. economic resilience will force the Fed to keep rates higher for longer,” Erlam said. “Gold can benefit if inflation doesn’t prove to be too sticky and the labor market starts to soften. The week ahead will provide clarity on what happens with the U.S. default watch and if the U.S. economy remains too strong and warrants further Fed tightening.”
Gold was pressured Friday after the Federal Reserve’s favorite gauge for U.S. inflation came in hotter-than-forecast for April, indicating that the central bank will raise interest rates again in June and July versus expectations for a pause.
All key metrics in the so-called Personal Consumption Expenditures, or PCE, Index rose for last month against forecast levels as the Fed keenly looked for indicators that would compel a hold on its higher-for-longer monetary policy that has already seen 10 rate hikes over 15 months.
For the year to April, the PCE Index expanded at 4.4% versus forecasts for 3.9% and previous growth of 4.2%. For the month of April itself, it jumped 0.4%, as expected and versus a prior expansion of 0.1%.
“Core” PCE, which strips out volatile food and energy prices, gained 4.7% on an annualized basis versus both the projected and previous rate of 4.6%. On a monthly basis, it rose 0.4% against the forecast and prior rate of 0.3%.
“Inflation is a problem and the consumer remains red hot,” economist Adam Button said on the ForexLive forum. “The Fed is going to hike again and now the odds are 58-42% for June and July is 100% with a slight chance of another hike. At some point the Fed will have to pause and evaluate but we're lapping some very high energy numbers now and it's not enough to get inflation to a 3-handle. At minimum, the Fed needs to start seeing some monthly numbers at +0.3% or lower.”
Investing.com -- The S&P 500 jumped Friday as negotiators in Washington inched closer to a debt-ceiling agreement that is needed to prevent the U.S. from defaulting on its debt payments.
The S&P 500 was up 1.3%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1%, or 330 points, the Nasdaq added 2%.
Republican and White House negotiators appear closer than ever to a breakthrough in debt-ceiling talks after narrowing on a potential deal that seeks to raise the debt limit and cap federal spending for two years through 2024, according to media reports.
“[W]e think the odds are highest that a deal is announced late Friday (May 26) or on Saturday (May 27),” Goldman Sachs said. “If so, this would likely allow a House vote late Tuesday (May 30) or Wednesday (May 31).”
The spending caps under the emerging agreement do not appear likely to “meaningfully affect the macroeconomic outlook,” it added.
The growing optimism of a breakthrough on debt-ceiling talks bolstered investor sentiment on stocks even as stronger consumer spending and inflation data tipped the scales in favor of a June rate hike.
Monthly personal spending rose 0.8% in April, topping economists' estimates of 0.4%, while core PCE rose 0.4% and also came in hotter than expected.
“The stronger-than-expected showing in price pressures and consumer spending will make it increasingly more difficult for the Fed to pause in June,” Sitfel said in a note.
About 70% of traders now expect the Fed to hike rates in June, compared with just 15% last week, according to Investing.com’s Fed Rate Monitor Tool.
Treasury yields rose in anticipation of further hikes, but that did little to dent optimism in interest rate sectors of the market including tech and consumer discretionary.
Meta Platforms Inc (NASDAQ:META), Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL), and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) pushed big tech higher, while Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) were the biggest gainers in consumer discretionary.
Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) gained 5% after the electric vehicle maker announced a partnership with Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) that would allow the latter access to its Superchargers in the U.S. and Canada.
Tech was also helped by a second day of strong gains in semiconductor stocks. NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) added to its rally from a day earlier, while Marvell Technology Group Ltd (NASDAQ:MRVL) surged 30% after estimating that revenue growth from artificial intelligence would at least double in fiscal 2024.
Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS) was also a big winner on the earnings front, rallying 13% after its quarterly results, released Thursday, showed improving margins.
“[W]e believe that management execution within the core Old Navy banner is beginning to improve with better assortments and an improvement in market share gains in women’s and baby,” Goldman Sachs said in a note.
Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA), meanwhile, fell 13% after the beauty retailer’s cut to its margin outlook offset first-quarter results that beat on both the top and bottom lines.
Still, the plunge in stock could prove short-term pain but long-term gain, UBS says, estimating that Ulta Beauty "will resume an upward trajectory over the course of the year…as the market sees signs that it can maintain its double-digit EPS algo for an extended period."
In other news, JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE:JPM) gained 1% as the Wall Street bank reportedly cut about 500 jobs this week, CNBC reported, citing unknown sources.
Decentralized finance protocol Voltz now allows Avalanche users to trade interest rate swaps of the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR), a benchmark dollar rate used throughout the global economy.
The new feature allows investors to hedge their exposure to interest rate changes and speculators to bet on whether the rate will go up or down, according to a May 24 announcement from Voltz seen by Cointelegraph.
SOFR is the interest rate on overnight loans paid by institutions when they use United States Treasury bonds as collateral. It was created to replace the older London Interbank Lending Rate (LIBOR). Because loans secured by Treasury bonds are considered very low risk, SOFR is often used as a benchmark to calculate other rates. SOFR is heavily influenced by the Federal Funds Rate set by the Federal Reserve.
In traditional finance, companies have used interest rate swaps based on SOFR for years to help protect themselves against rate fluctuations. For example, a company that wanted to borrow could use these products to protect itself against Fed rate hikes.
The Voltz feature makes this traditional finance product available on the Avalanche network, potentially opening its use case to a wider group of investors.
Simon Jones, CEO and co-founder of Voltz Labs, said that the new feature would help level the playing field between retail investors and large institutions.
“Everyone is exposed to what the Fed decides to do [but] only a handful of institutions have access to interest rate swap markets that allow them to hedge that exposure, until now,” he said. In his view, the launch of the Voltz protocol makes “traditional financial markets accessible on DeFi rails.”
Traditional financial products have been making their way into DeFi slowly but surely. Securities broker-dealer INX launched shares of Greenbriar Capital via Ethereum on April 3 and developed a compliance-friendly wallet for institutions to go along with it. On April 27, Neobank released a Soulbound token protocol to simplify the Know Your Customer process for DeFi. Neobank hopes the protocol will enable banks to integrate more with the growing Web3 ecosystem.
XPO will be based on extensive market research of Cryptocurrencies, its compatibility with third-party services wallets, exchanges etc, and performance over the years.
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