The Week on Wall Street
Stocks surged last week, ignited by another COVID-19 vaccine announcement, encouraging economic data, and the easing of political uncertainty.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 2.21%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 added 2.27%. The Nasdaq Composite index, which has led all year, gained 2.96%. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, climbed 1.54%.
Dow Breaks 30,000
For the third consecutive week, markets opened on Monday to yet another announcement of a potential COVID-19 vaccine.
Stock prices found additional support on news that President-elect Biden would be nominating Janet Yellen, the former Chair of the Federal Reserve, to be Secretary of the Treasury. Investors reacted well to the choice, encouraged by her previously voiced support for greater fiscal stimulus and relieved that a candidate less antagonistic to the industry was selected.
Positive momentum continued into the following day, driving the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 index, and the Russell 2000 to record high levels, with the Dow closing above the 30,000 milestone.
Stocks eased off their highs in pre-Thanksgiving trading, though they recovered some of those losses on Friday, as the S&P 500 and NASDAQ Composite closed with fresh record highs.
A Microcosm of the Economy
The economic outlook has been difficult to figure out due to conflicting signals. One day it’s a historic jump in economic growth; another day it’s a record high in new COVID-19 infections. Last week was a good illustration of this. Reports of healthy consumer spending, a solid rise in durable goods orders, and sales of new homes remaining near almost-14-year highs were balanced by a jump in new jobless claims, a decline in household income, and new state and local COVID-related restrictions.
Last week investors chose to see the glass half full and look past the near-term challenges the economy faces.
THIS WEEK: KEY ECONOMIC DATA
Tuesday: Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Manufacturing Index.
Wednesday: Automated Data Processing (ADP) Employment Report.
Thursday: Jobless Claims, Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Services Index.
Friday: Employment Situation, Factory Orders.
THIS WEEK: COMPANIES REPORTING EARNINGS
Monday: Zoom Video Communications (ZM)
Tuesday: Salesforce.com (CRM)
Wednesday: Splunk (SPLK), Snowflake, Inc. (SNOW), Crowdstrike Holdings (CRWD)
Thursday: Marvell Technologies (MRVL), Dollar General (DG), Docusign (DOCU)
“The need for mystery is greater than the need for an answer.”
– Ken Kesey
Recipe of the Week
Green Goddess Sandwich
- ¼ cup finely chopped chives
- ¼ cup mayo
- ¼ cup tarragon
- ¼ cup Greek yogurt
- 1 lemon, halved
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ head butter lettuce
- ¼ of a cucumber, thinly sliced
- 1 avocado, thinly sliced
- 4 slices whole grain bread
- 8 ounces of fresh mozzarella, sliced
- 2 cups of fresh alfalfa sprouts
- Combine the chives, mayo, tarragon, Greek yogurt, juice and zest from half the lemon, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and salt and pepper to a blender and puree until smooth.
- Squeeze the juice from the other half of the lemon over the lettuce and cucumbers in a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.
- Smash the avocado slices between two slices of bread, season with salt and pepper, and arrange the lettuce and cucumber. Top with the mozzarella and sprouts.
- Spread the Green Goddess dressing on the bread and serve! Adjust the amount of dressing preferred depending on preference.
Stay Safe While Shopping Online
- Make sure the site you are shopping from is secure. You can tell by looking for “https” in the URL. If there isn’t an “s”, be weary of providing your credit card information. You can also look for a lock icon in the URL bar.
- Make sure you are using a secure internet connection. Avoid shopping online if you’re using unprotected WiFi, including WiFi networks at the library, work, the mall, or other public places.
- Look out for phishing emails, which are emails that come from spam accounts pretending to be from a legitimate business.
- Use unique passwords for each of your accounts and make sure your passwords are strong (at least 12 characters, contain upper and lowercase letters, contain numbers, and contain special characters). Don’t use any personal information in your password, such as your name or family’s names.
Do You Still Need Your 3-Iron?
Give a Homemade Gift This Holiday Season
- Homemade candles
- Embroidered gift card holders (a perfect personal touch for a gift card)
- Bath bombs
- Arm-knitted blanket
- Clay ring holder using oven-baked clay (no kiln required!)
Eco-Friendly Shopping Tips
- When possible, shop secondhand. Some people might view secondhand gifts as taboo, but they’re just as thoughtful, if not more so, than new items because they are unique in their own way.
- Shop local and shop small. Small businesses that are conscious of their environmental footprint are helping to do their part to create a more sustainable shopping landscape.
- When shopping for clothes, look for items that are made from sustainable materials, such as cotton. Polyester is made from plastic and is non-biodegradable.
- If you’re going out shopping, consolidate your trips so you don’t have to waste gas going to multiple stores.
- Bring your own shopping bags to limit the use of paper and plastic bags.
 CNBC, November 24, 2020