5/1/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  It was a good week to own stocks. Not all financial news was good news last week, but that didn’t prevent U.S. stock markets from moving higher. Barron’s reported on the good news:1 “This past week, welcome political news from Europe, a batch of stellar corporate-earnings reports, and a concrete tax proposal to cut corporate and some personal rates sharply gave the bull even more reasons to rally. By Friday’s close, the Dow Jones […]

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3/20/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  Three steps and no stumble… Technical analyst Edson Gould developed a market rule of thumb known as ‘three steps and a stumble.’ It states stock prices may fall after the Federal Reserve (Fed) raises the Fed funds rate three times in a row without a decline, according to Market Technicians Association.1 The idea is three increases show the Fed is serious about keeping rates at a relatively high level for a significant length of […]

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3/13/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  Rate hike ahead…maybe. Last week’s U.S. employment report was better than expected. The United States added 235,000 jobs in February, which was a few more than economists had forecast.1 It may seem counterintuitive, but the positive economic data helped push U.S. stock markets lower. The jobs report was a sign the American economy continues to be strong and indicates a rate hike may be on the horizon. Barron’s reported:1 “If anything, the data just […]

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2/27/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  Once upon a time, five blind men discovered an elephant. Each man examined a different part of the elephant and formed a unique impression about the animal. One believed an elephant was like a pillar, while another decided an elephant was like a snake.1 In recent weeks, stock and bond markets have been telling different stories, too. Following a rally on Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average finished at a record high for the […]

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2/13/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  What’s the word ‘phenomenal’ worth? It all depends on who says it. Barron’s shared Wilshire Associates’ calculations which indicated the word was worth about $175 billion – the amount markets gained last Thursday – when President Trump used it to describe the tax plan his administration will deliver “ahead of schedule.” Markets gained another $100 billion in value on Friday. Barron’s reported:1 “While tax reform is definitely coming, a final bill is still a […]

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2/6/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  U.S. stock markets were unsettled last week. President Trump’s executive order banning travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries to the United States for 90 days, in tandem with some disappointing earnings reports, inspired turmoil and uncertainty that helped push U.S. stock markets lower early in the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped below 20,000.1, 2 Mid-week, markets remained sanguine after the Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged. An economist cited by Barron’s said:3 […]

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1/9/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

…And, they’re off! Bullish sentiment helped world equity markets get off to a fast start last week.1 Just name a country or region – developed markets, emerging markets, the United States, Latin America, Asia, Europe, the United Kingdom – and it’s likely the area’s benchmark index may have been up for the week.2, 3 Not everyone was in the bullish camp, though. Barron’s reported:1 “The market optimism is understandable. After a long spell of zero […]

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1/3/2017 Weekly Market Commentary

  What a difference a year makes! At the start of 2016, investors were rather pessimistic and risk averse, preferring bonds to stocks. By the end of the year, they were quite optimistic and preferred stocks to bonds. In between, markets traveled a bumpy road. During January of last year, few investors imagined we would be where we are today. Markets started 2016 in a tailspin with investors worried about slower growth in China, U.S. […]

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12/19/2016 Weekly Market Commentary

  The Federal Reserve put a hitch in the markets’ giddy-up last week. It wasn’t the Fed’s second interest rate hike in a decade that caused markets to stumble. December’s rate hike was old news before it happened. In mid-December, Reuters reported Fed funds futures indicated there was a 97 percent probability the Fed would raise rates one-quarter percent at its December Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting. In addition, all 120 economists polled by […]

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12/12/2016 Weekly Market Commentary

  Dad: “Fra-gee-lay” …it must be Italian! Mom: I think that says “fragile,” honey. Dad: Oh, yeah.1 This holiday season, investors’ enthusiasm for U.S. stocks has rivaled old man Parker’s passion for his major-award leg lamp in ‘A Christmas Story.’ Last week, three major U.S. indices hit all-time highs.2 Barron’s reported consumer confidence is helping make this the most wonderful time of the year for U.S. stock markets.2 The University of Michigan’s Index of Consumer […]

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