Weekly Market Commentary February 22, 2022

The Markets Investors’ appetite for risk diminished as the Russian threat to Ukraine intensified. Volatility was high last week as investors guessed and second-guessed how markets would react if Russia invaded Ukraine and sanctions were imposed on Russia. They also wondered what would happen if Russia pulled back. The questions are difficult to answer. Adam… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary February 14, 2022

The Markets Why did stock markets in the United States finish the week lower? If this were Jeopardy, acceptable answers to that question might include: Rising inflation. Major U.S. stock indices were trending higher until the Consumer Price Index (CPI) Summary showed inflation at a 40-year high. Consumer prices overall were up 0.6 percent in… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary February 7, 2022

The Markets A rosy view through the rearview mirror. To say that economists did not have great expectations for the January employment report might be understating their position. It was widely believed that the spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant would translate into a dismal jobs report.1 It didn’t. “After some estimates called for U.S.… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary January 31, 2022

The Markets Last week, the January stock market decline was interrupted by a Friday afternoon rally. “The S&P 500 rose 2.4 percent, its biggest one-day jump since June 2020, while the technology-heavy Nasdaq composite rose 3.1 percent. Friday’s gain snapped a three-day streak of losses and left the S&P 500 up 0.8 percent for the… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary January 24, 2022

The Markets When is a barometer not a barometer? It’s widely recognized that people do not make perfect financial decisions. In fact, many investors rely on mental shortcuts when asked to make complex decisions. That may be why there are theories that correlate stock market performance to football, hemlines and sales of headache remedies. For… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary January 18, 2022

The Markets Is the economy doing well, or not? If you skimmed the headlines last week, you may have seen that retail sales – the purchases we make from stores in-person or online – declined 1.9 percent in December. The statistic may have raised questions about the strength of the economy. After all, how could… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary January 10, 2022

The Markets Here’s a little story about a group called the Fed… In the 1950’s, then Fed Chair William McChesney Martin described the Federal Reserve as “the chaperone who has ordered the punch bowl removed just when the party was really warming up.” In 2020, the opposite was true. The Fed, along with fiscal policymakers,… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary January 3, 2022

The Markets 2021 was a fizzing mints-in-soda kind of year. Everything seemed to shoot higher – from COVID-19 cases and vaccinations to economic growth and global stock markets. Everything except for optimism. As the year came to an end, a CBS News poll found that 40 percent of Americans felt 2021 was mostly filled with… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary December 27, 2021

The Markets Investors were feeling bullish. Last week, the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index closed at a record high for the 68th time this year. That’s the second-highest number of record closes in a single year. The highest number occurred during 1995, when the S&P 500 had 77 record highs, reported Reuters. That… Read more »

Weekly Market Commentary December 20, 2021

The Markets Stock and bond markets diverged. Last week, the Bank of England surprised markets with a rate hike, its first in three years, and the Bank of Mexico raised rates more than expected. Both cited persistent inflation as the reason for the increases, reported Carla Mozée of Markets Insider. In the United States, the… Read more »