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Markets Surprisingly Resilient Despite September Effects


September Effects brings down markets for another year, PM Sunak under pressure after cancelling HS2 project, London Web3 Week kicks off.




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TradFi & Global Market News

Global Market: S&P 500 & NASDAQ

The September Effect persists for the fourth consecutive year this year as US stocks take a drop before the start of the Holiday season. The S&P 500 dropped by 4.64% to 4288.29, while the NASDAQ falls by 5.09% to 13307.77 from the start of September to October. Reasons for the fall this year stem from more positive reasons. As the Fed stays committed to its high interest rates to cool inflation and avoid the recession, unemployment is at one of its lowest points, hovering around 3.8%.

Given that the upcoming Holiday quarter traditionally holds the best returns for stocks, investors are starting to relook at key e-commerce players this year. There are signs of this as markets closed slightly higher than at the start. This year, Shopify is a strong contender for a market player to watch out for. One metric to look out for is the attach rate, which is revenue generated as a percentage of gross merchandise value. In Q2, Shopify reached an attach rate of 3.08%, its highest ever. This means that many shoppers are buying adjacent secondary items on top of what they had intended to buy. Beyond revenue generation, this is a good signal that its product innovations to drive on the platform are successful. This is a great sign for investors as they continually improve their products.

Global Market: FTSE100

FTSE100 closes 1.4% down from its opening on Monday, now hovering at 7534.75. The UK markets continue to underperform as consumer staples and healthcare sectors are the biggest losers this week. Manufacturing data suggests it is in a contractionary period as the Purchasing Manager’s Index remains close to its 39-month low of 43.0 in September. Downturns in October usually spell trouble but this year, analysts believe that US trends and the undervaluation of UK stocks mean that stocks will remain resilient, thus avoiding a crisis.

Infrastructure News: HS2

Budgeting issues have been a global issue this week. The US government narrowly avoided a shutdown as they barely came to a consensus on foreign aid expenditure for Ukraine. Over in the UK, the HS2 infrastructure project has come into the spot again as PM Rishi Sunak announces plans to cut the northern portion of this new high-speed railway. HS2 was meant to be the largest infrastructure project in Europe that quicken transport from London to other major cities like Manchester and Birmingham. The project was expected to cost £72 billion in its first conception; however, it has since risen to £106 billion post-Covid, where construction prices soared. Budgeting has been a persistent issue for the UK, given their cost of living crisis for the past months and talks about tax cuts that need to be financed. Critics of the move include Tory mayor Andy Street, who called it a decision of “cancelling the future” and, more so, it demeans their credibility to international investors.

DeFi & Digital Assets News

Cryptocurrency Market: Bitcoin & Ethereum

Cryptocurrencies have been relatively stable over the past month aside from a sudden jump before a quick dip between 1 October and 2 October. Ethereum is only 1% up from the start of September, closing at 1651.59, while Bitcoin is doing substantially better, up 5.63% in the same period, closing at 27432.30.

These price spikes have caused a sudden short liquidation of $97.51 million, constituting 85.12% of all liquidations between October 1 and 2. Short liquidations occur when an investor shorts a position, but the market price rises instead. To avoid excessive losses to the investor, the position is automatically shorted. The rise in prices could be attributed to 2 channels. Firstly, there has been a notion of “Uptober” where crypto markets have been bullish during the start of Q4 for the last few years, and many investors may ride on these historical trends. Secondly, prices had risen beyond the 27850 benchmark for the short-term holder’s realised price, the value of Bitcoins in circulation divided by the number of Bitcoins in circulation. This means that many holders will likely sell their coins to realise their profits. This suggests a shift towards positive sentiment from traders and for the market as a whole.

Digital Asset News: Grayscale

On 2 October, Grayscale applied with the SEC to convert the Grayscale Ethereum Trust, the largest ether investment product at $4.9 billion in AUM, into a spot Ethereum exchange-traded fund. Currently, the trust invests indirectly through Ether futures contracts, but this move will allow direct investment into the underlying asset.

This move is seen as a massive boost of confidence to investors as the trust accounts for 2.5% of all circulating Ethereum. These shifts will bring Ethereum even closer to US regulation than ever before. Persistent innovations will only strengthen the layman’s confidence in cryptocurrency as a medium of transacting values as regulatory bodies have fewer holes to poke. This will only further its path into mainstay financial markets, which should inspire early crypto-natives to rally behind such moves. Grayscale is not the only firm looking to make the jump. Valkyrie has fallen under the radar of market readers as they have also applied with the SEC to expose their investors to Ethereum through their Bitcoin Strategy ETF. However, this is more similar to Grayscale’s first strategy of indirect exposure through futures contracts. Nevertheless, the result of Grayscale’s application could kickstart positive momentum for other firms to evolve their product under the same regulations.

Innovation News: London Web3 Week

London Web3 Week started on October 7. This year’s focus is to align the community on the steps to make London a global cryptocurrency hub while incentivising the industry to adopt blockchain technologies for operational use. A global issue surrounding cryptocurrency is evident in the constant battles between firms and the SEC regarding financial regulation. The above section shows how furthering Web3.0 innovations requires consistent push and alignment to existing financial market regulations in the US. The question posed for London or European markets in general is whether they can adopt more progressive legislation that encourages rather than challenge the adoption of cryptocurrencies.

This year, the conference will focus on blockchain applications in trading, its use case in the Web2.5 space of linking existing technologies to decentralised ones for financial transactions and the potential of on-chain gaming products. In any case, a large volume of successful use cases will only further the legitimacy of blockchain as a FinTech tool, marking a sign of society’s increasing acceptance of a decentralised, efficient financial system.


In Other News…

Short Updates:

Science Creates Ventures – Bristol-based SCVC hits $100 million funding for its second fund to support deep-tech start-ups. The needs and technical expertise required for a science-based start-up differ significantly from other start-ups. This is an excellent chance for the UK economy to consider innovation an economic driver.


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