U.S. stocks ended a defensive week in the red as investor sentiment deteriorated in the face of fresh worries out of China. For the week, the S&P 500 fell 5.77%, the Dow lost 5.82%, and the NASDAQ slid 6.78%.
Much of last week's selloff can be attributed to ongoing worries about China. After Chinese officials unexpectedly devalued China's currency two weeks ago, recent economic releases indicate that the world's second-largest economy is rapidly slowing.
A slide in global crude oil and other commodity prices also contributed to fears of a slowdown. Oil breached the $40/barrel level on a combination of supply and demand worries. Though domestic producers have cut back on drilling operations, OPEC producers like Saudi Arabia and Iraq continue to hold the spigot wide open in the hopes of chasing U.S. producers out of the market. On the demand side of the ledger, investors are worried that a slowdown in China might affect the world's appetite for oil.
When markets take a dive, it's natural to worry about what's happening and where markets will go next. However, part of being a stock investor is taking market swings in stride. Now is the time to stay cool-headed and focused on your long-term goals. We are keeping a very close eye on markets worldwide and will update you as needed during the evolving situation. While we can't predict where markets will go in the next days and weeks, we focus on helping clients manage their wealth in many market environments.
Looking ahead, investors will be targeting a slew of domestic data this week, including an important economic outlook report from the Federal Reserve. This week's Jackson Hole Symposium, a gathering of global economists, will hopefully provide additional clarity from Fed economists due to give speeches. Investors will also be watching for more news about Greece's snap elections, as well as more data out of China.
Tuesday: S&P Case-Shiller HPI, New Home Sales, Consumer Confidence
Wednesday: Durable Goods Orders, EIA Petroleum Status Report
Thursday: GDP, Jobless Claims, Pending Home Sales Index
Friday: Personal Income and Outlays, Consumer Sentiment
Notes: All index returns exclude reinvested dividends, and the 5-year and 10-year returns are annualized. Sources: Yahoo! Finance and Treasury.gov. International performance is represented by the MSCI EAFE Index. Corporate bond performance is represented by the DJCBP. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly.
Weekly jobless claims rise more than expected. The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose more than projected last week, though the underlying trend is consistent with continued labor market improvement and the previous week's claims were revised downward.
Housing starts boom. Groundbreaking on new homes rose in July to the highest level in nearly eight years. Builders ramped up activity on single-family homes, indicating that they expect significant demand later this year.
Inflation rises steadily. A measure of inflation, the general increase in the cost of goods and services, rose slightly in July, supporting expectations of an interest rate hike this year.
Existing home sales rocket to eight-year high. Resales of U.S. homes increased more than expected in July, rising 2.0%, and indicating that the housing market has legs.
These are the views of Platinum Advisor Marketing 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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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.
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