skip to main content
Market News Posted by John Doherty June 30, 2024

Grains, Interest Rates, and Gold Futures


TopstepTV banner 113023

Top things to watch this week

The Economic Calendar:

MONDAY: S&P Global Manufacturing PMI (8:45a CT), Construction Spending (9:00a CT), ISM Manufacturing Index (9:00a CT)

TUESDAY: Redbook (7:55a CT), Jerome Powell Speaks (8:00a CT), JOLTS (9:00a CT)

WEDNESDAY:  EARLY CLOSE IN OBSERVANCE OF THE INDEPENDENCE DAY HOLIDAY (4TH OF JULY), John Williams Speaks (6:00a CT), MBA Mortgage Applications (6:00a CT), Challenger Job Cuts (6:30a CT), ADP Employment Change (7:15a CT), Balance of Trade (7:30a CT), Jobless Claimes (7:30a CT), Import/Export Prices (7:30a CT), S&P Global Composite PMI Final (8:45a CT), Factory Orders (9:00a CT), ISM Services Index (9:00a CT), Total Vehicle Sales (9:00a CT), EIA Petroleum Status Report (9:30a CT), EIA Natural Gas Report (11:00a CT), FOMC Minutes (1:00P CT)


FRIDAY: John Williams Speaks (4:40a CT), Unemployment Rate (7:30a CT), Baker Hughes Rig Count (12:00p CT)

Key Events:

  • Holiday shortened trading week with the July 4th holiday on Thursday and many traders stretching the holiday into a long weekend.
  • Traders focus on Friday’s employment and payroll numbers.
  • Fed Chair Powel will speak on Tuesday, and Williams will speak on Friday.
  • Economic reports on PMI-Mfg, Construction Spending, JOLTS Job Openings,  ADP Employment Change, and Payrolls.
  • FOMC Meeting Minutes on Wednesday.
  • Tesla’s Q2 numbers, with quarterly deliveries expected to fall.


This Friday, estimates are for Non-Farm Payrolls (180k survey vs. 272k prior) and the Unemployment Rate (4.0% survey vs. 4.0% prior).

A higher unemployment rate would suggest that softening demand is easing pressures in the labor market; a lower unemployment rate would indicate that the slowing in immigration in recent months is tightening the labor market.

Eco Calendar for Friday July 5 2024


A tale of two markets emerged in Q2: a red-hot technology sector propelling the S&P 500 to new highs and a broad swathe of underperforming stocks. This divergence can be attributed mainly to a single theme – artificial intelligence (AI).

The S&P 500 market-weighted was higher by 4.40% for Q2. However, the broader Equal Weighted S&P 500 was only up 0.85%, and the even broader Russell 2000 was down 3.52%.

Sectors that outperformed in Q2:
Technology (XLK) had the strongest performance, with a Q2 change of 8.62%. Utilities (XLU) and Consumer Staples (XLP) also did well, with a Q2 change of 3.79% and 0.29%, respectively.

Sectors underperforming in Q2:
Energy (XLE) and Materials (XLB) were the worst performers, with a Q2 change of -3.45% and -4.93% respectively. Health Care (XLV) and Industrials (XLI) also underperformed in Q2 with a change of -1.34% and -3.25% respectively.

The market’s future trajectory remains uncertain. Some analysts see room for further gains, especially if second-quarter earnings meet expectations. Only three sectors—consumer staples, industrials, and materials—are forecast to report shrinking earnings, with seven anticipating growth exceeding 5%.

Stock Sector Performance Sheet 06-30-2024


U.S. Treasury futures have been slow recently but broke below their recent trading channel on Friday.

This week, the FOMC Minutes will have an impact if they shine more light on what convinced FOMC members that progress on inflation has restarted and, second, to what extent FOMC members are considering the policy tradeoffs between inflation and growth.

Some participants changed their forecasts after the softer print, and some did not. Discussion of the CPI and SEP changes could give a better sense of the Fed’s reaction function.

10 Year Note Chart 06-30-2024

Source: TradingView


Corn futures plunged Friday after the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its highly anticipated acreage report, revealing a larger-than-expected corn planting figure for 2024.

The USDA pegged corn plantings at 91.5 million acres, exceeding the agency’s prior estimate of 90.3 million from March and the broader market’s expectations. Analyst estimates hovered around 90.353 million acres, with trade guesses falling from 89.0 million to 91.3 million acres.

This unexpected increase in projected corn plantings sent shockwaves through the grain markets. Corn futures tumbled 5% in the immediate aftermath of the report’s release, reflecting concerns about a potential corn glut. While the USDA’s figure is still 3 million acres below final 2023 tallies, it suggests a larger-than-anticipated crop size could be on the horizon, potentially pressuring prices in the coming months.


The World Gold Council’s latest Central Bank Survey confirms that monetary authorities are looking to increase their gold purchases in the future.

The long-term store of value/inflation hedge, performance during times of crisis, effective portfolio diversifier, and no default risk all make gold attractive. (see graphic below)

While central banks’ motivations for owning gold may vary, they tend to have one thing in common: the share of USD in portfolios has been declining, and China’s holdings of U.S. treasuries dropped by $102bn in the past 12 months, while gold holdings have risen by $51bn, since Jan 2023.

Gold Stats 06-30-2024

Asset class performance sheet

These performance charts track the daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly changes of various asset classes, including some of the most popular and liquid markets available to traders.

Asset Class Performance Summary 06-30-2024

All content published and distributed by Topstep LLC and its affiliates (collectively, the “Company”) should be treated as general information only. None of the information provided by the Company or contained herein is intended as (a) investment advice, (b) an offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or (c) a recommendation, endorsement, or sponsorship of any security, Company, or fund. Testimonials appearing on the Company’s websites may not be representative of other clients or customers and is not a guarantee of future performance or success. Use of the information contained on the Company’s websites is at your own risk and the Company, and its partners, representatives, agents, employees, and contractors assume no responsibility or liability for any use or misuse of such information.
Futures trading contains substantial risk and is not for every investor. An investor could potentially lose all or more than the investor’s initial investment. Only risk capital—money that can be lost without jeopardizing one’s financial security or lifestyle—should be used for trading, and only those individuals with sufficient risk capital should consider trading. Nothing contained herein is a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell futures, options, or forex. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.
CFTC Rule 4.41 – Hypothetical or Simulated performance results have certain limitations. Unlike an actual performance record, simulated results do not represent actual trading. Also, because the trades have not actually been executed, the results may have under-or-over compensated for the impact, if any, of certain market factors, such as lack of liquidity. Simulated trading programs, in general, are also subject to the fact that they are designed with the benefit of hindsight. No representation is being made that any account will or is likely to achieve profit or losses similar to those shown.