Stock Market Update Sunday, December 2nd, 2018
Last week was one of the best weeks of the year with the S&P higher 4 out of 5 days.
After a rough October and rocky couple of weeks in November, the turnaround helped push the major indices into positive territory for the month of November.
The S&P wrapped up the month with a 3.8% gain, the DOW was up 1.7%, and the NASDAQ managed to slip back into positive territory with a 0.3% gain.
Here's what traders were focused on:
- The Fed
On Wednesday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said that he believes interest rates are "just below" neutral. The tone from the Fed Chair is a lot different from a month ago when Powell said rates were "a long way from" neutral. Higher interest rates are usually bad for stocks, so Powell's change in tone helped fuel a rally that was the best we've seen since March.
- Trade War
Traders were anxiously awaiting a meeting between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G20 meetings on Saturday. Although there were some tough comments earlier in the week, traders grew more optimistic as the week went on. And on Friday, U.S. Trade Representative Lighthizer said that he would be surprised if the meeting was not a success.
- Holiday Sales
Black Friday broke online sales records. And Cyber Monday was a record breaker as well. The strong sales helped boost retailers like Amazon (AMZN). Amazon announced that Monday was the single busiest shopping day in the company's history and finished the week higher by 12.5%.
Here's where the major indices ended the week:
- The S&P finished with a 4.9% gain. Up 128 points, the S&P ended at 2,760.
- The DOW ended higher by 5.2%. Adding 1253 points, the DOW closed at 25,538.
- The NASDAQ was up 5.6%. 392 points, the NASDAQ finished at 7,331.
- Bitcoin finished lower by 6.9%. Down $290, Bitcoin ended at $3,895.
Crude Oil (CL) had finished lower for 7 weeks straight. But the losing streak came to an end last week, with CL up 1.1%, closing at $50.95 a barrel.
The G20 meetings wrapped up on Saturday. And it sounds like U.S.-China trade talks were a success.
The U.S. has agreed to not raise tariffs at the beginning of the year. And China has agreed to help reduce the trade deficit by purchasing an undisclosed amount of agricultural, industrial and energy-related products from the U.S. The two countries announced a goal of resolving all other trade related issues over the course of the next 90 days.
Microsoft (MSFT) became the most valuable company in the world on Friday, with Apple (AAPL) dropping to the #2 spot. Apple struggled all November after a disappointing earnings report. Apple finished the week with 3.7% gain while MSFT was higher by 7.6%.
It was a great week for most stocks, but this wasn't the case for Marriott (MAR). The stock suffered a 5.6% loss on Friday, after reports of a data breach that exposed the information of as many as 500 million customers.
Here is the economic calendar for the week:
Real Time Economic Calendar provided by Investing.com.
This Stock Market Update was provided by Rockwell Trading Services LLC.