Market Roundup: Markets End Holiday-Shortened Week with New Record Highs

While domestic markets were closed Monday in observance of Memorial Day, international markets were still shrugging off concerns about the United States pulling out of the Paris climate agreement the previous week. On Tuesday, U.S. stocks started the week edging lower on declines in banks and oil firms. The slip continued mid-week despite the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book showing the U.S. economy has continued to grow at a “modest or moderate” pace. All was reversed on Thursday when the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500 and NASDAQ all hit new record highs with Financial, Technology and Healthcare stocks leading the way. In economic news, the ISM Manufacturing index fell just shy of expectations, registering a reading of 54.9. On Friday the three major indices hit new record highs for a second straight session. Meanwhile, the Department of Labor showed 138,000 jobs added last month, well shy of analysts’ expectations of 185,000. The unemployment rate dipped to 4.3% from 4.4%.

Money Talks – May 27, 2017

This week on “Money Talks” host Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, is joined by Principal Jennifer Thomas, CFP®, and Managing Associate K.C. Smith, CFP®, to discuss housing news and the latest minutes from the May Federal Open Market Committee meeting. They also talk about interest rates and legislation out of Washington.  K.C. and Jennifer lead a discussion on reverse mortgages and how they may affect elder care. They look at a situation where an investor has entered into a reverse mortgage and his children are concerned about his potential need for long-term care. The experts round out the show by answering listeners’ questions on the progress in retail commerce and rolling over a 401(k).

Market Roundup: Friday Marked 20th Record for S&P 500 for the Year

The market kicked off the week with gains on Monday, with stocks ending trading near session peak levels. Crude oil prices also rose ahead of the OPEC meeting set for later this week. Stocks traded upward on Tuesday. A strong corporate earnings season and a stable economy have helped the market stay buoyant despite concerns that the Trump administration may struggle to push through plans for policy changes like tax cuts and fiscal stimulus. In housing news, Commerce Department data showed new home sales slipped 11.4% to 569,000 in May versus expectations of a 610,000 annual rate. Additionally, March’s result was revised to an annual pace of 642,000, which marked its highest level since October 2007. Mid-week saw the S&P 500 Index reach a fresh high, while minutes from the Federal Market Open Committee meeting signaled that interest rates could rise in June. The rally continued on Thursday with Consumer Discretionary stocks leading the way. The major indices finished Friday relatively flat, but higher for the week. Both the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ saw record highs while the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed fractionally lower. Consumer sentiment for May increased slightly, likely because consumers have become more divided on their politics and expectations of economic growth.

Money Talks – May 20, 2017

This week on “Money Talks,” Managing Associate D.J. Barker, CWS®, joins Bil Lako, CFP®, and Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, to discuss consumer prices, residential construction, industrial production and the market’s reaction to turbulence in Washington. D.J. brings to the table a case study about a young couple who are receiving advice to pay off their home as soon as possible. D.J. and Bil explain the advantages of carrying a mortgage and Troy compares their borrowing rate to the possible return they could get in the market. The hosts also answer listeners’ questions on Technology’s effect on the oil industry, what constitutes college costs, having additional insurance beyond Medicare and stock holding Foot Locker.

Market Roundup: Late Rally Couldn’t Overcome Losses

A rally late last week pulled the markets higher, but not enough to overcome a midweek tumble. On Monday, stocks increased on a jump in commodity prices boosting shares of energy and mining companies. Tuesday, Technology shares sent the NASDAQ to a record high. According to the Census Bureau, the pace of new home construction took a step back, as the annualized rate of housing starts in April was 2.6% below the March total. Housing starts, housing completions and the number of building permits each lagged in volume compared to March. Indices concluded trading in the red zone on Wednesday, with stocks dipping in the wake of turbulence in Washington. Meanwhile, crude oil prices ticked up as Energy Information Administration data showed stockpiles decreased by 1.8 million barrels in the last week. Global stock losses extended through Thursday on uncertainty about the Trump administration. Indices rebounded from early week lows on Friday, with stocks moving up on gains in the Energy sector and earnings news.