• A narrow victory of separatist parties in Catalonia rattles Spanish stocks

  • US Congress approves the short-term funding bill in order to avoid a government shutdown

  • A cryptocurrency block experiences an immense sell-off, Bitcoin (BTCUSD) falls more than 30% from its all-time high

Sentiment on stock markets improved a bit as the Congress passed a short-term funding bill. Asian benchmarks took their cues from their US counterparts posting modest gains. In Europe the main indices have declined moderately with the Spanish Ibex (SPA35) falling hard in the aftermath of the Catalan snap election. Taking a closer look at the cryptocurrency block one may spot a widespread sell-off pushing the major digital coins from their recent peaks. In terms of the macroeconomic data the top-tier releases scheduled for today are still ahead.

It’s been remarkably interesting week for the Swedish currency. Not only consumer confidence improved in December but also the Riksbank decided to complete its bond buying programme this year. Last but not least, retail sales in November grew well above forecasts being a potential boost for the SEK.

USD could have gained momentum as the House averted a government shutdown risk narrowly passing a short-term funding bill. As a result, the deadline has been pushed back to 19th January.

Separatist parties claimed a narrow victory in the regional election in Catalonia rattling Spanish stocks.  Three pro-independence forces together make up as many as 70 seats and even as they have two seats less compared to the previous election in 2015 the number is enough to hold a slim majority. However, it’s highly unlikely that a new independence referendum will take place in the foreseeable future.

After several days of relative calmness sellers have taken control on the cryptocurrency markets ultimately. Consequently, the Bitcoin price crashed over the past hours to below $13,000 from above $17,000 seen yesterday morning. Dash has already plunged from above $1300 to below $900.

In today’s calendar we still have Canadian and US data releases ahead of us. In the early afternoon investors will focus on US PCE print as disappointing inflation limits scope for Fed. Simultaneously Canadian GDP for October will be released. As both of these are considered as top-tier data higher volatility on USDCAD may appear.