Market Summary – April 1, 2024

Last Week’s Summary

  • S&P 500 Index rose 0.40%
  • International Equities rose 0.17%
  • Emerging Markets rose 0.17%
  • U.S. 10-Year Treasury Yield rose to 4.20%
  • Initial Jobless Claims remained at 210k
  • Durable Goods Orders rose to 1.4%
  • GDP rose to 3.4
  • U. of Mich. Sentiment rose to 79.4

What to Watch for This Week

  • M, 4/1/24 S&P Global U.S. Manufacturing PMI
  • T, 4/2/24 Durable Goods Orders, Factory Orders
  • W, 4/3/24 MBA Mortgage Applications, ADP Employment Change
  • Th, 4/4/24 Initial Jobless Claims
  • F, 4/5/24 Change in Nonfarm Payrolls, Unemployment Rate

Weekly Market Recap

A stellar quarter for stocks culminated on a high note amidst optimism that the Federal Reserve will successfully engineer a soft landing, further fueling Corporate America.

The S&P 500 surged past 5,250, closing with a quarterly gain exceeding 10%. Despite a day that lacked a sense of direction for most of the trading session, stocks edged upward as investors absorbed remarks from Fed Governor Christopher Waller, who expressed a preference for “at least a couple months of improved inflation data” before considering rate adjustments.

Traders exercised caution ahead of key events, including the Fed’s favored inflation metric release and Jerome Powell’s forthcoming remarks on Friday, coinciding with market closure. Reflecting the sensitivity to imminent Fed actions, Two-Year Yields rose by five basis points to 4.62% in a truncated trading week before the holiday break.

Economic indicators painted a positive picture with both gross domestic product and consumer spending showing robust growth in the final quarter of the previous year. Consumer sentiment also saw a notable uptick toward the end of March, buoyed by strong gains in the stock market and expectations of easing inflation.

Looking ahead to the new quarter, traders are anticipating a fresh batch of job data releases, including the ADP Employment Change, Nonfarm Payrolls, and the Unemployment Rate. These figures are eagerly awaited as they may provide insights into the Federal Reserve’s future rate decisions.

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