Happy summer! It's hard to believe we are almost half way through 2020. It's been a strange year to say the least. I'm hopeful that we have a more optimistic second half of the year. Broad markets have been stable the last few trading days even in light of the continued news cycle and Netflix shows that dominate our TV screens.
Stocks moved higher last week on news of more Federal Reserve market support and diminished concerns that new COVID-19 cases might lead to another economic shutdown.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.04%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 1.86%. The Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 3.73% for the week. The MSCI EAFE Index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, increased 1.88%.1,2,3
Market sentiment also was helped by talk of more fiscal stimulus and a report that China would be moving ahead with agricultural purchases to comply with phase one of the trade deal, easing concerns over growing friction in the U.S.-China relationship.
Mixed Economic Data
Retail sales, which were up by 17.7% in May, reflected a strong, encouraging rebound in the U.S. consumer. Consumer spending was particularly strong in clothing, furniture, sporting goods, and autos.4,5
But industrial production (up by only 1.4%) and new housing starts (ahead by just 4.3%) showed tepid rebounds, indicating that recovery has yet to reach all corners of the American economy. Jobless claims posted their best number since mid-March (1.5 million), but remained high by historical standards.6,7,8
THIS WEEK: KEY ECONOMIC DATA
THIS WEEK: COMPANIES REPORTING EARNINGS
Source: Zacks, June 19, 2020
1. The Wall Street Journal, June 19, 2020
2. The Wall Street Journal, June 19, 2020
3. The Wall Street Journal, June 19, 2020
4. The Wall Street Journal, June 16, 2020
5. The Wall Street Journal, June 16, 2020
6. MarketWatch, June 16, 2020
7. CNBC, June 17, 2020
8. The Wall Street Journal, June 18, 2020
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Weekly Market Insights: U.S. Economy Gains Momentum
June 23, 2020