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Market Commentary: Fed Raises Rates by 0.75%, Market Moves Into Bear Territory

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: Fed Raises Rates by 0.75%, Market Moves Into Bear Territory

The S&P 500 dropped 5.7% last week and is now 22.3% off its peak. This decline pushed the index of large-cap U.S. stocks into a bear market, which is defined as a 20% or greater drop from its peak. Volatility remained elevated, and the S&P 500 has now moved by 1% or more 60 times this year.

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Special Market Commentary: S&P 500 Slips Into a Bear Market. Now What?

Market Commentary

Special Market Commentary: S&P 500 Slips Into a Bear Market. Now What?

Fueled by inflation readings that have remained stubbornly elevated, the stock market, measured as the S&P 500 Index, entered bear market territory at market close on June 13, 2022.  A bear market represents a decline in equity values by more than 20%.

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Market Commentary: Inflation Pressures Remain High, S&P Dips Again

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: Inflation Pressures Remain High, S&P Dips Again

The S&P 500 dropped 5.1% last week as investors digested new inflation data released on Friday. May’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) report showed a reacceleration of inflation after a brief reprieve in April. Headline CPI increased 8.6%, which is the fastest pace since December 1981. The primary drivers of inflation were energy and food prices. Gasoline prices increased 4.1% in May, a big reversal from the 6% decline in April. Food prices, primarily from grocery store spending, climbed 1.4%.

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Market Commentary: Positive Jobs Report Raises Hopes, but Stocks and Bonds Dip

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: Positive Jobs Report Raises Hopes, but Stocks and Bonds Dip

The S&P 500 dropped 1.2% last week as a strong employment report was a little “too good” and raised concerns of more interest rate hikes in the future. The U.S. economy added 390,000 jobs in May, based on the establishment survey. Job growth is slowing, but it remains well above the level required to provide jobs for new workers entering the labor force for the first time.

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Market Commentary: S&P Soars After 7 Straight Losses, but Inflation Remains Stubborn

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: S&P Soars After 7 Straight Losses, but Inflation Remains Stubborn

The S&P 500 ended its string of seven negative weeks by rallying 6.6% last week. The surge in stock prices gave the index some margin between its current price and the 20% decline the index flirted with just two weeks ago. After the rally, the S&P 500, including dividends, is down 12.8% from its record high.

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Market Commentary: S&P Decline Continues While Consumer Demand Keeps Climbing

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: S&P Decline Continues While Consumer Demand Keeps Climbing

The S&P 500 continued its string of negative weeks, dropping 3% last week. It was the seventh straight weekly decline in the index of large-cap stocks. The S&P 500 temporarily fell more than 20% on Friday, but the market rallied and the index finished down 18.1% from its January all-time high.

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Market Commentary: S&P 500 Decline Continues, But Inflation Shows Signs of Leveling Off

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: S&P 500 Decline Continues, But Inflation Shows Signs of Leveling Off

Market volatility continues to make life challenging for investors. The S&P 500 declined for the sixth straight week, the longest streak since 2011. Six-week losing streaks used to be much more common. The S&P 500 declined at least six consecutive weeks six different times from 2000 to 2011.

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Special Market Commentary: What’s Stressing Out Stocks? These Market Inflection Points

Market Commentary

Special Market Commentary: What’s Stressing Out Stocks? These Market Inflection Points

So far, 2022 is faring to have one of the worst ever starts for stock returns. Only 1932 and 1939 have proven to be more difficult through the first four calendar months. The reasons are numerous and front-of-mind for us all: an unexpected war in Ukraine, the lingering impacts of COVID-19, the highest inflation rates in 40 years, and the prospects for a contentious mid-term election right around the corner.

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Market Commentary: U.S. and U.K. Central Banks Offer Contradictory Outlooks, Making for a Rollercoaster Market Week

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: U.S. and U.K. Central Banks Offer Contradictory Outlooks, Making for a Rollercoaster Market Week

Market volatility surged last week, although the end result for the S&P 500 was a decline of only 0.2%. Central banks were the main culprits for the volatility. On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve announced it would raise rates 0.5% and clarified plans on how it will shrink its balance sheet. In the subsequent press conference, Fed Chair Jay Powell announced there are no plans for rate increases of 0.75% in a single meeting. Those comments contributed to a sharp rally in the S&P 500, which increased almost 3% on Wednesday.

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Market Commentary: Despite Disappointing GDP, Underlying Strength Keeps U.S. Economy on Solid Footing

Market Commentary

Market Commentary: Despite Disappointing GDP, Underlying Strength Keeps U.S. Economy on Solid Footing

Market volatility continued last week as global markets tried to digest a slew of earnings reports and economic updates. Likely the biggest release was the U.S. GDP report for the first quarter, which showed the U.S. economy contracted by an annualized 1.4% over the first three months of the year. While the market initially responded positively, it was obvious by the end of the week that equity markets were nervous.

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