Market Roundup: Friday’s Rally Pushed Flat Week into Green Zone for Major Indices

Coming off a mixed jobs report from the previous Friday, the markets experienced directionless trading on Monday. By the closing bell, the major indices were firmly in the red. Reversing course, stocks closed Tuesday’s trading session with gains, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a new record level. Consumer brands stepped up across all indices while a dip in Technology stocks put pressure on the NASDAQ. Midweek brought new record highs with Consumer Staples leading the advancers. Stocks stepped up following the release of the September Federal Open Market Committee meeting minutes, which suggested an 80% likelihood of a December rate hike. Indices reversed course on Thursday, closing in the red zone. Financial and Energy sectors traded lower on earnings details and a slide in crude oil. Department of Labor data showed initial jobless claims fell by 15,000 to 243,000 last week. Indices traded into green territory on Friday on a variety of economic news. The Consumer Price Index climbed 0.5% for September, which was shy of expectations, while the core CPI edged up just 0.1%. In other reports, retail sales ramped up in September, as overall sales climbed 1.6%, while core sales tacked on 0.5%. In a preliminary reading, the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index showed consumer sentiment increasing to 101.1 from 95.1 in September.

Money Talks – October 7, 2017

This week, Principal Jennifer Thomas, CFP®, and Managing Associate D.J. Barker, CWS®, join Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, to discuss the week’s record-setting market movements and year-to-date sector performance. They also highlight economic indicators, from the Institute for Supply Management, the Manufacturing and Non-manufacturing indices. Jennifer and D.J. lead a discussion on Social Security benefits for married couples, focusing on deciding when to take benefits and how it should depend on when you need the money. The hosts also spend time answering listeners’ questions on health care companies Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc., and Roche Holding, Ltd., oil and gas exploration company Pioneer Natural Resources, long-term disability insurance coverage, estate planning to control the distribution of wealth, and Tyson Foods, Inc. 

Market Roundup: Equities Surge for Week Despite Friday’s Late Downturn

The benchmark indices posted notable gains for the week despite a late downturn on Friday. The U.S. stock indices kicked off the week, closing in green territory on Monday. Gains reached across several sectors, including Financials, Consumer Discretionary, and Health Care. In economic news, The ISM Manufacturing Index climbed to 60.8 in September, from 58.8 in August, marking the highest level since May 2004. The following day, the indices set new record highs as many Consumer Staples brands posted gains. On another note, U.S. automakers reported stronger-than-anticipated sales for September. Record levels were reached again mid-week as stocks stepped up on a variety of economic news. The ISM’s Non-manufacturing Index showed that services industry activity ticked up to 59.8 in September from 55.3 in August, marking the highest level since August 2005. New record highs continued on Thursday with Consumer Staples stocks leading gains amid a variety of economic news. Weekly jobless claims declined last week. Department of Labor figures showed new claims dipped by 12,000 to 260,000. Elsewhere, U.S. factory orders increased in August, as Census Bureau data showed new orders for manufactured goods ticked up 1.2%. On Friday, the major indices slid down in afternoon trading following a mixed Jobs Report for September. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma likely affected payroll figures for September, but the unemployment rate declined to 4.2%—0.2 percentage point below August’s rate, and hourly earnings increased. 

Money Talks – September 30, 2017

This week on “Money Talks,” Managing Associate Shawna Theriault, CFP®, C.P.A., joins hosts Bil Lako, CFP®, and Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA to discuss the S&P Core Logic Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, New Home Sales, consumer confidence, and durable goods. Troy and Shawna lead a great discussion on how business valuations are often needed during a divorce to make sure the division of a jointly owned business is equitable when it comes to future cash flow. Troy explains how cash flow is determined by the cost of capital. The experts round out the show answering listeners’ questions on Kimberly Clark, working in retirement, tax relief for hurricane victims and the trends in Blue Chip stocks.

Market Roundup: Markets Experience Nearly Flat Week

The major U.S. stock indices started the week in red territory on Monday, pulled down by a decline in Technology shares. U.S. tensions with North Korea also likely weighed on the market. The next day, many of the same Technology shares that were down Monday, rebounded, which helped the NASDAQ eke out a slight gain. The larger Dow Jones Industrial Average index closed less than a percentage point lower. Financial companies led stocks higher on Wednesday with investors taking bets on an improving economy and corporate profits. Gains continued on Thursday with Consumer stocks taking the lead. In economic news, the U.S. gross domestic product growth rebounded slightly in the second quarter. Real GDP ticked up 3.1%, from 1.2% growth in the first quarter. Additionally, the Department of Labor data showed first-time claims for unemployment benefits rose by 12,000 to 272,000, likely because of the recent hurricanes. Indices ended trading in the green zone on Friday with stocks posting gains on a variety of economic news. Personal income growth dipped to 0.2% from a downwardly revised 0.3% gain in July. On another note, the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Survey fell by 1.7 points to 95.1 in September. Crude oil closed the week at $51.57 a barrel.