Invictus Capital: Weekly Wrap 26.02

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Market News

Traditional markets found themselves under pressure this week as a flurry of central bank comments (most notably from the ECB and US Fed) about continuing to provide accommodative policy failed to curb the trend of rising longer-term bond yields. These low yields have been a key pillar supporting last year’s incredible stock market performance.

Thursday saw the pace of these increases accelerate, and in risk-off market moves reminiscent of 2013’s Taper Tantrum, global stock markets and gold reacted with a sharp move downwards while the dollar appreciated (GameStop was again in the news as a notable exception to the stock market rout). This was despite pandemic headwinds continuing to ease — evidenced by encouraging US employment data and continued vaccine rollouts — and strong expectations for more fiscal stimulus globally. US stimulus negotiations continued, with a vote on a revised bill being put to the House tonight (if passed it will head to the Senate for final passage). The revised bill no longer stipulates contentious changes to minimum wages, and the Biden administration is desperately trying to ensure passage before 14 March when some of the provision from the emergency relief bill signed in December runs out.

Similarly to traditional markets, the “up only” crypto narrative took a knock this week as Bitcoin topped out at around $58k, pulling back to below $50k. Over $4 billion in long liquidations were seen on Monday and Tuesday alone, resetting the extremely bullish premiums seen on futures contracts. C10 dodged the drawdown and along with C20 posted favorable performance over Bitcoin and Ether. But despite the red candles, there was no shortage of positive news in the space, with Microstrategy and Square completing Bitcoin purchases of $1.026 billion and $170 million, respectively (average prices around $50k). Elsewhere, Bitfinex and Tether settled their case with the NYAG’s office, admitting no wrongdoing and agreeing to a penalty of $18.5 million.

Indicators (19 February — 26 February)

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