Jobs Push Stocks Up
In This Issue
Domestic stocks only traded for 4 days last week, due to the Independence Day holiday. In that time, all 3 major domestic indexes posted positive results for the week. The S&P 500 added 1.52%, the Dow gained 0.76%, and the NASDAQ increased 2.37%. [1] International stocks in the MSCI EAFE were up as well by 0.56%. [2] 
Once again, trade and tariffs were a major topic on many people's minds. On Friday, July 6, the U.S. and China placed $34 billion of duties on each other's imports. [3]  However, instead of focusing on the trade-war escalation, another topic captured many investors' attention: the latest jobs report.

What did we learn about the labor market?

This month's report about the employment situation provided several indications that the economy continues to be healthy and growing.  

1. The economy added more jobs than expected.
Economists predicted approximately 195,000 new jobs in June. Instead, the report showed that the economy added 213,000 new positions. [4] This positive performance indicates the labor market may be somewhat looser than people originally thought. As a result, the economy may have more ability to continue growing without inflation becoming a bigger concern. [5] 

2. More people tried to enter the labor market. 
Unemployment rose from 3.8% to 4% in June. On the surface, this result may seem negative. In reality, the increase comes from people who were sitting on the sidelines deciding to look for work once again. This choice indicates they feel more confident in their potential to find jobs. [6]  

3. Wage growth continued at a moderate pace.
The latest data revealed wage growth at a 2.7% annual pace, which was slightly below projections. Economists aren't certain why wages are growing at such a tepid rate, considering the labor market's strength. [7] However, with a record number of open jobs, wage growth should increase later this year. In addition, June's pace should help calm concerns about the economy growing too quickly. [8]   

One detail that June's employment report didn't show was any meaningful, negative impacts from tariffs. If the trade disputes continue, however, industries such as manufacturing and construction could suffer. For now, the economy is starting the 3 rd quarter on relatively strong footing - after a 2 nd quarter that experts say could have experienced economic growth as high as 5%. [9] 

We will continue to monitor ongoing trade developments for any lasting effects on the economy or our clients' financial lives. As always, if you have any questions, we're here to talk.  

Tuesday: JOLTS
Thursday: Consumer Price Index,Jobless Claims
Friday: Consumer Sentiment

Notes: All index returns (except S&P 500) exclude reinvested dividends, and the 5-year and 10-year returns are annualized. The total returns for the S&P 500 assume reinvestment of dividends on the last day of the month. This may account for differences between the index returns published on and the index returns published elsewhere. International performance is represented by the MSCI EAFE Index. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly .

"The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." 

- Ayn Rand

Mixed Green and Herb Tossed Salad
Serves 6

  • 6 cups mixed spring greens (like Bibb, pea shoots, and mâche), torn
  • 2 cups mixed herbs (like tarragon, dill, mint, and chives), chopped
  • 1 cup shelled edamame
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Kosher salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • Soft-cooked eggs and edible flowers, for serving
  1. Mix greens and herbs together in a large bowl. Put in edamame. 
  2. Mix in olive oil, lemon juice, mustard, honey, and ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Add shallot and stir.
  3. Gently add dressing and put eggs and flowers on top.


Recipe adapted from Good Housekeeping [10]


Stop Strong-Arming Your Swing

Conventional sporting wisdom may suggest that the more muscle you put into your swing, the farther your ball will go. Raw power equals distance.

Not in golf, according to top coaches. The game requires finesse, not brute force.

Watch the pros. Their swings follow an easy, balanced, rhythmic flow.  

Here are some tips to remove the muscle from your swing and add some grace:
  • Do a few relaxed practice swings. Focus on long, smooth ones.
  • Address the ball as you would normally, but be relaxed. Try doing a big "yawn," then let your jaw go slack. Hold a strong grip on your club for a couple seconds, then relax.
  • Turn your shoulders as you begin your backswing rather than bending your right (or dominant) elbow. 
  • Bend your right (or dominant) elbow at the top of your swing, which will cause your wrists to cock. Let the swing flow in the same way as your practice swing.
  • Your left (or non-dominant) side should start your downswing.  
  • Strike the ball and continue the swing naturally into your follow-through. 
Keep in mind that natural, graceful swings will produce more distance and accuracy than bristle and brawn.

Tip adapted from Golfweek[12]
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Investing involves risk including the potential loss of principal. No investment strategy can guarantee a profit or protect against loss in periods of declining values.

Diversification does not guarantee profit nor is it guaranteed to protect assets.

International investing involves special risks such as currency fluctuation and political instability and may not be suitable for all investors.

The Standard & Poor's 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted average of 30 significant stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ. The DJIA was invented by Charles Dow back in 1896.

The Nasdaq Composite is an index of the common stocks and similar securities listed on the NASDAQ stock market and is considered a broad indicator of the performance of stocks of technology companies and growth companies.  

The MSCI EAFE Index was created by Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) that serves as a benchmark of the performance in major international equity markets as represented by 21 major MSCI indices from Europe, Australia, and Southeast Asia.
The 10-year Treasury Note represents debt owed by the United States Treasury to the public. Since the U.S. Government is seen as a risk-free borrower, investors use the 10-year Treasury Note as a benchmark for the long-term bond market.

Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance.

Past performance does not guarantee future results.

You cannot invest directly in an index.

Consult your financial professional before making any investment decision.

Fixed income investments are subject to various risks including changes in interest rates, credit quality, inflation risk, market valuations, prepayments, corporate events, tax ramifications and other factors.

These are the views of Platinum Advisor Strategies, LLC, and not necessarily those of the named representative,  
Broker dealer or Investment Advisor, and should not be construed as investment advice. Neither the named representative nor the named Broker dealer or Investment Advisor gives tax or legal advice. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. Please consult your financial advisor for further information.

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