Stocks Up as Milestone Passes

Last week, the East Coast prepared for Hurricane Florence, which roared through the Carolina’s and Georgia.  As investors kept their eyes on the weather and its potential for destruction, estimates emerged of up to $27 billion in hurricane damage.  This potential for damage contributed to insurance companies in the S&P 500 declining last week.  While the hurricane likely won’t have a large effect on our economy, its destruction could influence data for months to come.

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A Shaky Start to September

Domestic markets fell last week due to negative trade news and declining tech stocks, with the S&P 500 and Dow both breaking their multi-week winning streaks.  Meanwhile, the NASDAQ posted losses for 4 days in a row for the first time since April and experienced its worst September start since 2008.

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Markets Up Again

Trade continued to dominate the news last week and cause market volatility as investors monitored discussions of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and tension with China.  While Mexico and the U.S. reached a new trade deal early in the week, talks with Canada stalled on Friday, August 31.  Reports also came out that President Trump may be adding tariffs on another $200 billion in Chinese goods.

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The Bull Market Continues

Last week marked a noteworthy milestone in our economy.  On Wednesday, August 22, the bull market entered its 3,453rd day, the longest such run in U.S. history.  In the past 9 plus years, domestic indexes have come quite a way since the dark days of the financial crisis.  The S&P 500 is now more than 4 times the level that it was when the bull market began on March 9, 2009.

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Trade & Turkey Drive Markets

Challenges in emerging markets affected  both U.S. and global stock performance last week, with the S&P 500 experiencing several down days.  By market close on Friday, however, two of the three domestics posted gains for the week.  The S&P 500 added 0.59%, the Dow increased 1.41%, and the NASDAQ lost 0.29%.  Meanwhile, the MSCI EAFE international stocks slipped 1.18%.

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Mixed Results as Turkey Stumbles

Stocked ended the week in mixed territory as trouble with Turkey’s currency affected U.S. equity performance on Friday, August 10.  For the week, the S&P 500 lost 0.25%, the Dow declined 0.59%, and the NASDAQ increased 0.35%.  International stocks in the MSCI EAFE stumbled, giving back 1.57%.

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Stocks Up as Data Comes In

Domestic markets ended last week in positive territory, as the S&P gained 0.76%, the Dow was up 0.05%, and the NASDAQ increased 0.96%.  This performance marked the 5th week in a row that the S&P 500 and Dow posted gains.  Meanwhile, international stocks in the MSCI EAFE stumbled, losing 1.47% for the week.

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Examining Economic Growth

Markets experienced a push-and-pull last week between data indicating strong economic growth and lagging performance from several tech stocks’ earnings reports.  Domestic indexes had mixed results, as the S&P 500 gained 0.61%, the Dow was up 1.57%, and the NASDAQ dropped 1.06%.  International stocks in the MSCI EAFE had more of an uptick, gaining 1.32% for the week.

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Earnings Season Continues

On Friday, July 20, stocks lost a small amount of ground after President Trump escalated his threats of increasing tariffs on China.  However, strong quarterly earnings reports from several large companies helped provide balance in the markets.  For the week, domestic indexes experienced little movement, as the S&P gained 0.02%, the Dow was up 0.15%, and the NASDAQ dropped 0.07%.  International stocks in the MSCI EAFE had slightly more change, with a 0.63% gain.

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Special Report: Quarterly Update

Last week, trade tensions with China lessened somewhat, while the 2nd quarter corporate earnings season started with mixed results.  Against this backdrop, domestic stocks experienced sizable growth.  By market’s close on Friday, July 13, the S&P 500 was above 2,800 for the first time since February 1. Meanwhile, the Dow was above 25,000, and the NASDAQ had hit a new record.  For the week, the S&P 500 gained 1.50%, the Dow added 2.30%, and the NASDAQ was up 1.79%.  International stocks in the MSCI EAFE increased as well by 0.16%.

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