Category Archives: Market Update

The Markets (as of market close November 30, 2018)

The Markets (as of market close November 30, 2018)

 

November proved to be a very volatile month for stocks.

 

By the third week of the month, the benchmark indexes listed here had given back just about all of the gains accumulated during the year. However, a spurt during the last week of November helped push stocks higher by the end of the month. Each of the indexes listed here outperformed their October end-of-the-month closing values, led by the large caps of the S&P 500 and the Dow, followed by the Global Dow and the small caps of the Russell 2000. The technology stocks of the Nasdaq edged higher by the close of November, and that index still maintains a sizeable lead year-to-date among the indexes listed here. 

 

Chart reflects price changes, not total return. Because it does not include dividends or splits, it should not be used to benchmark performance of specific investments.

 

Nevertheless, investors head into the last month of the year anxiously, as fears of a slowing economy and growing international trade tensions will likely temper expectations for steady stock gains moving forward. Energy stocks have been hit by falling oil prices, and the yield on 10-year Treasuries fell below 3.0% as bond prices rose after the Federal Reserve chairman intimated that interest rates may not be increasing as aggressively as previously thought… Click here to read the full article. 

The Markets (as of market close October 31, 2018)

The Markets (as of market close October 31, 2018)

October truly was a scary month as stocks closed the month well below their end-of-September values.

 

The tech-heavy Nasdaq lost over 9.0% by the end of October, while the small caps of the Russell 2000 fared even worse, losing almost 11.0%. The S&P 500 fell close to 7.0% – its largest monthly decline in over seven years.The Dow dropped 5.0%, and the Global Dow sank over 7.0%. A slide in internet stocks, coupled with investor concerns that global economic growth is slowing, helped amp up volatility during October. Yields on long-term bonds rose as prices fell, with the yield on 10-year Treasuries climbing about 8 basis points on the last day of the month. By the close of trading on October 31, the price of crude oil (WTI) was $64.95 per barrel, down from the September 28 price of $73.53 per barrel.

 

October 2018 Market Review
Chart reflects price changes, not total return. Because it does not include dividends or splits, it should not be used to benchmark performance of specific investments.

The national average retail regular gasoline price was $2.811 per gallon on October 29, down from the September 24 selling price of $2.844 but $0.356 more than a year ago. The price of gold rose by the end of August, closing at $1,216.80 on the last trading day of the month, up from its price of $1,195.20 at the… Click here to read the full article.

Market Update | Quarterly Market Review for Q3 (as of market close September 28, 2018)

The third quarter proved to be very strong for domestic stocks.

 

July saw the major benchmark indexes listed here enjoy robust gains, led by the large caps of the Dow and S&P 500.

 

Global stocks also rebounded in July, with the Global Dow surging 3.76% by the end of July. Favorable economic indicators and encouraging corporate earnings reports were enough to quell investor concerns over the continuing saga that is the back-and-forth trade tariffs between the United States and China. August saw stocks continue to push ahead. Several of the benchmark indexes listed here reached record highs during the month. Both the Dow and S&P 500 posted monthly gains of 2.16% and 3.03%, respectively. However, tech stocks and small caps made notable monthly gains. 

 

Q3 2018 Market Update

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Nasdaq increased by almost 6.0%, while the Russell 2000 eclipsed 4.0%. Corporate earnings continued to soar on the heels of corporate tax cuts, consumer spending, and global growth Corporate earnings continued to soar on the heels of corporate tax cuts, consumer spending, and global growth. Toward the end of September, a new round of reciprocal tariffs between the United States and China kicked in as it appears neither economic giant is ready to flinch. The United States imposed an additional $200 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods, prompting China to assess $60 billion worth of tariffs on U.S. products… Click here to read the full article.

Market Update | The Markets (as of market close August 31, 2018)

The Markets (as of market close August 31, 2018)

Stocks enjoyed a record-setting month in August as several of the benchmark indexes reached new all-time highs during the month.

 

Of the benchmark indexes listed here, only the Global Dow lost value. Otherwise, indexes representing large caps, small caps, and tech stocks all posted noteworthy monthly gains. A strong employment situation, positive economic growth, and relatively stagnant inflation have contributed to investor confidence, despite ongoing global trade wars. Tech stocks soared in August, as the Nasdaq jumped almost 6.0% — its strongest August showing in 18 years. Following the Nasdaq was the Russell 2000, which gained over 4.0%. The large caps of both the Dow and S&P 500 also posted notable gains.

September 2018 Market Update

Chart reflects price changes, not total return. Because it does not include dividends or splits, it should not be used to benchmark performance of specific investments.

 

By the close of trading on August 31, the price of crude oil (WTI) was $69.90 per barrel, up from the July 31 price of $68.43 per barrel. The national average retail regular gasoline price was $2.827 per gallon on August 27, down from the July 30 selling price of $2.846 but $0.418 more than a year ago. The price of gold decreased by the end of August, closing at $1,206.90 on the last trading day of the month, down from… Click here to read the full article.

Market Update | The Markets (as of market close July 31, 2018)

Published: August 6, 2018

Favorable economic indicators and encouraging corporate earnings reports helped propel stocks forward in July.

Market growth has come despite trade wars between the United States and other trade partners, particularly China. 

 

Earlier in the month, the world’s two largest economies imposed tariffs of $34 billion on each other’s goods. Toward the end of July, there was hope of reopening negotiations between the United States and China in an attempt to diffuse the ongoing trade war. Domestically, the U.S. economy appears to be thriving. Over 210,000 new jobs were added in June, although wages have grown by only 2.7% over the last 12 months. Nevertheless, consumers are making more and spending more, while inflationary pressures on prices for goods and services remain in check.

 

Chart

Chart reflects price changes, not total return. Because it does not include dividends or splits, it should not be used to benchmark performance of specific investments.

 

Despite some periods of volatility, July proved to be a very good month for the benchmark indexes listed here. Led by the Dow, large caps, small caps, and tech stocks gained value over their respective June closing prices. Year-to-date, the Nasdaq is ahead by over 11.0%, followed by the Russell 2000, the S&P 500, the Dow, and the Global Dow, which is only 0.20% above its 2017 year-end value. By the close of trading on July 31, the price of crude oil… Click here to read the full article. 

 

Willis Johnson & Associates is a registered investment advisor. Information presented is for educational purposes only. It should not be considered specific investment advice, does not take into consideration your specific situation, and does not intend to make an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any securities or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and are not guaranteed. Be sure to consult with a qualified financial advisor and/or tax professional before implementing any strategy discussed herein. Insurance products and services are offered or sold through individually licensed and appointed agents in various jurisdictions. 

Market Update | Quarterly Market Review for Q2 (as of market close June 30, 2018)

Published July 6, 2018

Quarterly Market Review: April-June 2018

The second quarter of the year can be called a lot of things, but boring isn’t one of them.

The potential for a trade war between the United States and China heated up in April as China responded to the threat of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports by warning of the same magnitude of tariffs on American exports.

 

Favorable corporate earnings reports helped calm some of the global economic angst investors may have felt. The indexes listed here ended the month ahead of their March closing values — but only barely. The Global Dow (1.16%) and the Russell 2000 (0.81%) posted the largest monthly gains, followed by marginal upticks in the S&P 500 (0.27%), the Dow (0.25%), and the Nasdaq (0.04%). Despite expanding trade tensions between the United States, China, Canada, Mexico, and the European Union, equities enjoyed a better month in May, riding surging energy stocks. For most of the month, oil prices hit multi-year highs before falling at the end of May.

 

Quarterly Market Review April-June 2018
Chart reflects price changes, not total return. Because it does not include dividends or splits, it should not be used to benchmark performance of specific investments.

Robust first-quarter earnings reports also helped push stock markets higher. In fact, each of the indexes listed here posted strong end-of-month gains. The small caps of the Russell 2000 (5.95%) and the tech-heavy Nasdaq (5.32%) enjoyed the largest gains, followed by the S&P 500 (2.16%) and the Dow (1.05%). Of the indexes in this report, only the Global Dow lost value, falling 1.95% by the end of May… Click Here to Read the Full Article.

Market Update | The Markets (as of market close May 31, 2018)

The Markets (as of market close May 31, 2018)

Despite a sell-off on the last day of the month, equities held enough of their gains to post mostly positive month-over-month returns. The Trump administration imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports on Canada, Mexico, and the European Union. And, just before scheduled trade talks with China were to resume, President Trump announced that he would proceed with tariffs on Chinese imports and limit Chinese investment in U.S. tech companies. Investors feared retaliation from impacted countries could lead to an all-out trade war. Early in the month, signs of rising inflation sent large caps down, while small caps and tech stocks climbed. However, stocks recovered following the Fed’s decision to maintain the current interest rate range. Throughout the month, stocks rallied, then slipped back, amid trade war fears, a few mediocre corporate earnings reports, and fear of rising price inflation.

 

market update for market month May 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nevertheless, each of the indexes listed here posted monthly gains, with the exception of the Global Dow. The large caps of the Dow and S&P 500 closed the month of May in the black… Click here to read the full article. 

Market Update |The Markets (as of market close April 30, 2018)

Published May 2, 2018

April was marked by the impending tariff war between the United States and China. Tensions between the world’s two largest economies certainly affected stocks both home and abroad. Escalating strife in Syria posed an additional reason for investors to be concerned. However, surging energy stocks lifted the market as crude oil prices approached $70 per barrel for the first time in almost three years. Talks between North and South Korea also helped ease investor tensions. By the close of April, the dollar reached its highest level since January, while yields on 10-year Treasuries approached 3.0% for the first time since 2014 —signs that the world views U.S. economic growth as on the rise.

Market Update for Market Month April 2018

With all of the upheaval during the month — both positive and negative — it’s no wonder that equities essentially closed April about where they began the month. Each of the benchmark indexes listed here posted meager positive monthly gains over their March closing values. The Global Dow enjoyed the best month, as the only index listed here to post a gain of over 1.0%. The Russell 2000 gained a little less than 1.0%, while the large caps of the Dow and S&P 500 crept up about 0.25%, respectively. The Nasdaq posted the smallest gain, however it leads the year-to-date race by a telling margin…Click here to read the full article.

Market Update | Quarterly Market Review for Q1 (as of market close March 29, 2018)

Published: April 3, 2018

Quarterly Market Review: January – March 2018

The Markets (as of market close March 29, 2018)

 

The first quarter of 2018 began as the fourth quarter of 2017 ended: with strong market gains. The Nasdaq led the way by the end of January, posting a monthly increase of almost 7.40%, followed by the large caps of the Dow (5.79%) and the S&P 500 (5.62%). The employment sector remained strong, with 239,000 new jobs added in January and average hourly earnings climbing 0.3%. Consumer prices rose 0.5% in January, while personal income increased 0.4%. The trade gap continued to widen, which has proven to be a focal point of the current administration. Nevertheless, consumer confidence in the economy increased in January with expectations for continued strengthening in the coming months.

 

Chart April 2018

 

Volatility returned to the stock market in February, with each of the benchmark indexes listed here posting notable losses from the prior month. Nasdaq, while down, fared better than the large caps of both the S&P 500 and the Dow. Investor concerns over rising inflation and interest rates seemed to trigger volatility. A strong labor report in February revealed a 2.9% increase in average hourly wages over a year earlier, the addition of 313,000 new jobs, and decreasing unemployment insurance claims. These factors combined to prompt investors to conclude that higher labor costs may eat into corporate profits, which might prompt the Fed to raise interest rates at a faster pace. February also saw long-term bond yields surge as evidenced by a 16-basis-point increase in yields for 10-year Treasuries, as bond prices fell… Click here to read the full article.

Market Update | The Markets (as of market close February 28, 2018)

Published: March 6, 2018

The Markets (as of market close February 28, 2018)

Despite some positive economic signs, rising consumer confidence, and favorable corporate earnings reports, February marked the end of the 10-month winning streak for the benchmark indexes listed here. Concerns over rising inflation and interest rates triggered a notable sell-off early in the month and pushed volatility to the forefront. Although the indexes listed here recovered much of their early February losses to close the month ahead of their 2017 closing values (with the exception of the Russell 2000), stocks did not maintain the pace set last year into January.

 

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New Fed chair Jerome Powell’s bullish assessment of the economy last week pushed the yields on 10-year Treasuries to their highest rates in several years (bond yields rise as prices fall), giving investors more reason to believe multiple interest rate hikes are in the offing for 2018...Click here to read the full article.

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