US Equity Markets touched record highs again last week, as tensions in the Middle East eased and technology stocks rallied. The S&P 500 rose 0.9% for the week and is now up 1.1% to begin 2020.The Nasdaq's out-performance continued last week, up 1.8%, bringing its gains for the year to 2.3%, while the Russell 2000 (small-cap stocks) continued to under-perform, down 0.2%, to bring its returns for the year to down 0.7%.
Global equity markets were mixed last week as new economic sanctions on Iran and falling oil prices offset the de-escalation in Middle East tensions. Developed Markets were down fractionally for the week and are only up 0.2% for the year thus far. Emerging Markets rallied 0.9% for the week to bring its gains up to 1.7% for the year.
Oil prices dropped sharply last week, down 6.2%, once it became clear that the US and Iran were both standing down. Interestingly, Gold prices rallied 2.6% for the week and have actually increased over 9% over the past five months.
Of Interest to Us
US Economic Data came out softer than expected last week, though still remain at healthy levels. Nonfarm Payroll gains for December totaled 145K vs. expectations of 160K, the Unemployment Rate for December was 3.5%, and annualized wage gains of 2.9% were a touch below forecasts. Measures of the US Services economy for December improved from November and remain at strong levels.
for the week ending 1/10/2020
If you have questions about the markets or would like to talk about your investments, please contact me at email@example.com or via phone at 704.940.3544.
Investors Trust Company helps its clients make sound financial decisions by providing strategic advice and asset management services with a high level of personalized attention. If we may help you or your clients with their investment management needs, please contact one of our Relationship Team members at firstname.lastname@example.org.