Global equity markets fell on trade concerns last week, with the S&P 500 down 0.9%, the EURO STOXX 50 dropping 1.8% and the Nikkei 225 down 1.5%. Chinese equities also took a hit, with the Shanghai Composite Index down 4.4%. Locally, the S&P/ASX 200 defied the trend, gaining 2.2% as the financial sector rebounded from its recent dip. Financial sector ETFs (MVB, OZF and QFN) were all amongst the top performing funds for the week, returning in excess of 5%. Chinese equity funds (CETF and IZZ) were amongst the week's poorest performers, declining by more than 4%.
The Australian dollar ended the week slightly lower at US74.40c, having dropped to a mid-week low of US73.46c. The euro and yen also gained against the U.S. dollar. U.S. 10-year Treasury yields declined by 3 basis points.
OPEC agreed to loosen output restrictions last week, though the added production fell short of expectations sending WTI Crude 5.4% higher to US$68.58/bbl. Precious metals declined across the board, with gold down 0.7%. ETFS Physical Silver (ETPMAG) and ETFS Physical Palladium (ETFMPD) were amongst the week's biggest decliners.
The Australian ETF market saw inflows of $60m into and outflows of $14m from domestically domiciled funds last week. The largest inflows were into BetaShares Australian High Interest Cash ETF (AAA) and global sustainability ETFs (ETHI and ESGI). The largest outflows were from BetaShares Australian Dividend Harvester Fund (HVST).