Market Roundup: Low Crude Oil Prices Weight on the Market While Fed Raises Interest Rates

The markets started the week on a positive note with Energy and Telecom stocks posting slight gains ahead of the December Federal Reserve meeting. The good news continued Tuesday as Energy stocks stepped up on a rebound in crude oil. Consumer prices held steady in November, as the Consumer Price Index was unchanged last month after climbing 0.2% in October. Discounting food and energy prices, the CPI jumped up 0.2% in November. The week’s rally continued on Wednesday when stocks stepped up on news from the December Federal Reserve meeting where policymakers boosted the benchmark interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point to between 0.25% and 0.50%. On another note, Energy stocks traded lower on a dip in crude oil. The markets closed trading at session low levels on Thursday. Labor Department data showed initial jobless claims decreased by 11,000 to 271,000 last week, while continuing claims fell by 7,000 to 2.238 million. The slip continued on Friday when the market closed at session lows. Stocks declined amid another downswing in oil. 

Money Talks – December 12, 2015

This week on “Money Talks,” Senior Associate, K.C. Smith, CFP®, and Analyst Nick Antonucci join hosts Matt Hames, CTFA, and Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, to discuss the market’s performance year-to-date, energy and oil prices, employment news and earnings from Krispy Kreme Doughnuts. In this week’s case study, the hosts look at a family whose children have left the nest. The experts focus on financially adjusting to their new lifestyle. K.C., Troy and Nick also address listeners’ questions on American Financial Group, tobacco supplier Universal Corp., what happens once a family fills out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and utility holding company Ameren Corp. They also provide their opinions on whether the European markets will perform better than domestic markets in the next three years.

Market Roundup: Markets Tumble More Than 3%

Energy stocks weighed on the markets Monday as crude oil futures settled at their lowest level in nearly seven years. The decline continued Tuesday with brands in the Materials and Industrials sectors trading lower in the wake of falling oil prices. The lower oil prices also weighed on the global markets. Technology stocks took their turn bringing the markets lower mid-week, while crude oil continued to slip. The U.S. Energy Information Administration said crude-oil inventories fell last week but distillates, which include heating oil and diesel, grew more than expected. On Thursday, the markets reversed course as the Labor Department showed a jump in initial jobless claims. First time claims for unemployment benefits rose by 13,000 to 282,000 last week. Continuing claims increased by 82,000 to 2.243 million in the last week of November. Unfortunately a rally was thwarted on Friday as Energy stocks continued to trade lower. Market action this week marked the weakest Dow and NASDAQ performance in a month and the worst week for the S&P 500 since August.

Money Talks – December 5, 2015

This week on “Money Talks,” Bil Lako, CFP®, Matt Hames, CTFA, and Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, discuss the economy and interest rates, the ISM Manufacturing and Nonmanufacturing indices, productivity and costs, and jobless claims. Our experts also discuss a case study focusing on a couple who have been disciplined savers and have plenty of money. However, they live a conservative lifestyle so their Social Security benefits pay for most of their living expenses. The hosts discuss how a Social Security income stream should be incorporated into a Ten Year Rule investment strategy. Bil, Matt and Troy also address listeners’ questions on Hydrogenics Corp., pharmaceutical companies Celgene Corp. and Lannett Company, and the lack of Social Security cost of living increases.