December 6, 2019
The U.S. job market bounced back in November.
Nonfarm payrolls increased 266,000 last month, a 10-month high and well above consensus estimates for a 180,000 gain. September and October payrolls were also revised up by 41,000. Manufacturing payrolls climbed by 54,000 in November, but about 40,000 of that rise reflected workers returning from the General Motors strike.
Stocks continue to climb. Stocks are getting a nice bump this morning after a better-than-expected November jobs report, with the S&P 500 Index poised for a third straight day of gains. Investors are in wait-and-see mode as they watch a continuous string of U.S.-China trade headlines. Continue reading
December 5, 2019
It has been a banner year for global equities, thanks to the S&P 500 Index’s 24.1% gain year to date. Developed market stocks have also climbed in 2019, but they haven’t shined as brightly as their U.S. counterparts—a consistent theme over the past several years.
Underperformance by international stocks has been persistent in this bull market. As shown in the LPL Research Chart of the Day, the MSCI EAFE Index of developed market stocks has underperformed the S&P 500 in 8 of the last 10 years, including 2019 to date.The impact over the entire period: a total return of 241% for the S&P 500 versus a 72% return for the MSCI EAFE.
Stocks rebound. Stocks are up this morning, adding to the S&P 500 Index’s 0.6% gain on Wednesday. Trade sentiment has shifted once again after a Wednesday report indicating that the United States and China are on track to reach a limited trade agreement by December 15 (when higher tariffs on $160 billion in Chinese imports are scheduled to kick in). Continue reading
December 4, 2019
It has been a rough start to the most wonderful month of them all, with the S&P 500 Index down each of the first two days of December. Don’t stop believing just yet, though.
Everyone knows December has usually been a good month for stocks, but what happened last year is still fresh in the minds of many investors. The S&P 500 fell 9.1% in December 2018 for the worst December since 1931. That sounds really bad, until you realize stocks fell 30% in September 1931, but we digress.
Stocks bounce back. Stocks are bouncing back this morning after they kicked off December with a two-day slide. The S&P 500 Index has dropped 1.5% so far this month amid a pessimistic turn in trade headlines, culminating in President Trump’s indications on Tuesday that he has “no deadline” in reaching a limited trade agreement with China. Continue reading
Outlook 2020 Blog
December 3, 2019
Hindsight is 20/20, but finding clarity in future uncertainty can be fuzzy.
As we look forward to the year 2020 and a new decade, some key trends and market signals will be important to watch, including progress on U.S.-China trade discussions, an encouraging outlook from corporate America, and continued strength in consumer spending. We expect the U.S. economy to continue to grow and support stocks, as our year-end 2020 S&P 500 Index fair value target range is 3,200–3,300.
Stocks slide. Stocks are sliding again this morning on reports of President Trump’s indications that he has “no deadline” to reach a limited trade agreement with China. Those reports could decrease the likelihood of a delay in an upcoming tariff hike scheduled to take effect on December 15. Continue reading
Welcome to December. It’s the most wonderful time of the year for U.S. stocks (based on history). Since 1950, the S&P 500 Index has climbed an average of 1.5% in December, its second-best monthly performance over that period. The last two months of the year have historically been the strongest for U.S. equities, and the seasonal tailwind has already appeared. Continue reading
November 27, 2019
This Thanksgiving, we’re thankful for solid consumer confidence, even though it has wavered in recent months.
Consumer confidence fell for a fourth straight month in November, according to preliminary Conference Board data. Even though the Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index has dropped from its economic cycle peak, consumer sentiment is still historically elevated, as shown in the LPL Chart of the Day.