|Weekly and Year-To-Date Performance|
|INDEX||12/31/2018||03/15/2019||03/22/2019||% Change Week||% Change YTD|
|Dow Jones Industrial Average||23,327.46||25,849.01||25,502.32||-1.32%||9.32%|
|Russell Mid-Cap Index||1,857.30||2,140.72||2,123.43||-0.81%||14.33%|
|Russell Small-Cap Index||1,348.56||1,550.94||1,509.46||-2.67%||11.93%|
March 22nd, 2019
Dear Friends –
The equity markets finished the week to the downside as a sharp selloff Friday pushed the major indexes into negative territory. For the week the Dow Jones Industrials, S&P 500 and the Nasdaq fell 1.34%, 0.77% and 0.32% respectively. The Russell Mid-Cap, Small-Cap and MSCI EAFE indexes were off 0.81%, 2.67% and 1.40% respectively.
Stocks opened the week to the upside Monday led by gains in energy and financials. The energy sector rose 1.4% as crude oil prices reached a four-month high as many OPEC members are voicing support in extending production cuts. Financials added 1.03% on broad-based strength in the banking sector. Shares of Boeing weighed on the Dow again closing down 1.77% as the focus on the 737 MAX intensifies. The Dow closed up 65 points or 0.25%, at 25,914. The S&P and the Nasdaq added 0.37% and 0.34%.
The markets finished mixed but with little change Tuesday as investors await the Fed’s interest rate decision. The Fed is widely expected to leave rates unchanged when their meeting adjures Wednesday but as has been the case of late the real focus will be on the forecasting comments. Reports of China pulling back on their trade concessions offer created a little uncertainty in the day’s session despite other reporting that said the talks are in the final stages. Shares of Apple fell 0.8% on the day which weighed heavily on the Dow. Shares of Caterpillar and Boeing moved higher in early trading but closed with little change. The Dow finished down 27 points or 0.1%, at 25,887. The S&P was off just 0.01% and the Nasdaq gained 0.12%. Crude prices dipped slightly after hitting a new high for the year in early trading. The benchmark 10-year Treasury note edged higher ahead of the Fed’s decision settling at 2.618%.
Stocks finished mixed but mostly lower Wednesday following the Fed’s interest rate announcement. The Fed left rates unchanged as expected but altered their forecast from two additional rate hikes this year to zero. The major indexes rallied on the news initially, but rolled over as the catch-22 of a weakening economy not needing additional rate hikes took hold. Treasury yields fell sharply on the news with the benchmark 10-year Treasury note falling over nine basis points to close yielding 2.524%. Financials followed suit with shares of Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and Bank of America falling over 2%. The Dow closed down 142 points or 0.55%, at 25,746. The S&P was off 0.29% and the Nasdaq added 0.07%. Crude prices ticked higher moving above the $60 mark for the first time in four months.
The markets made a solid move higher Thursday led by a rally in the technology sector. Shares of Apple climbed 3.7% following an analyst upgrade and the tech sector gained 2.5% overall. Apple’s gains helped lift the Dow to its best gain in five weeks. Optimism over the trade talks with China picked up following the news of another meeting between top trade advisors set to take place next week. In economic news weekly jobless claims fell to a one-month low last week, activity in the Philadelphia Fed region increased this month after falling in February and the Conference Board’s leading economic indicator index rose in February for the first time in five months. The Dow finished with a gain of 217 points or 0.8%, to settle at 25,963. The S&P and the Nasdaq added 1.1% and 1.4%.
Stocks reversed course and sold off heading into the weekend Friday as concerns over economic growth worldwide took a toll. The S&P 500 logged its worst day in two months as only the defensive utilities sector managed to post a gain on the day. Materials, financials and energy led the declines with losses of 2.98%, 2.77% and 2.62%. The spread between the 3-month and 10-year Treasury note went negative for the first time since 2007, which is broadly referred to as an “inverted yield curve” and seen as a sign of an upcoming recession. The benchmark 10-year Treasury closed down ten basis points to finish at 2.439%. The Dow settled with a loss of 460 points or 1.77%, at 25,502. The S&P and the Nasdaq were off 1.9% and 2.32%.