Market Briefing

Market Briefing

News, analysis and commentary

By Logan Robertson and Thomas J. Connelly, CFA, CFP®

April 17, 2020

US equity markets finished the week green, with the S&P 500 returning 3.0%, Dow Jones Industrial Average returning 2.3%, and Nasdaq soaring 7.6%. Small Caps didn’t fare as well, down -1.3% for the week. Health Care and Consumer Discretionary sectors lead the pack for the week; Energy stocks jumped 10.6% today, despite a steep decline in the price of crude. International Developed markets closed the week flat and Emerging posted a 2.6% gain. The VIX fell nearly 12% over the week, down to 38.01.

US Treasuries and Municipal bonds posted modest positive returns for the week, while T.I.P.S, Investable-Grade Corporates, and High Yield Corporates took losses. US 10Y Treasuries yield 0.651% now, down slightly for the week.

Gold fell -2.0% on the day, ending the week flat. WTI Crude Oil fell -8.6% today, -21.7% for the week.

This morning, China reported that their y/y GDP fell -6.8%, giving us a first look at the economic impact of their Coronavirus measures. Continued jobless claims in the US reached 11,976,000, a number that dwarfs the previous peak of 6,618,000 in the midst of the Global Financial Crisis. An additional 5,245,000 initial jobless claims were reported. The Federal Reserve launched a colossal fiscal stimulus program last week, set to purchase $2.3 trillion of nearly all types of credit including high-yield (junk) bonds and highly levered commercial real estate securities.

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