The Week on Wall Street
Upbeat comments by the Federal Reserve Chairman and more signs of an economic turnaround combined to help fuel a powerful rally in the stock market last week.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 3.29%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 advanced 3.20%. The Nasdaq Composite index climbed 3.44% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, gained 3.87%.
Stocks Cheer Fed Support
The markets surged higher to open the week, buoyed by a Sunday night “60 Minutes” interview with Fed Chair Jerome Powell, who said that the Federal Reserve would do everything necessary to support economic recovery. Rising oil prices and more states lifting restrictions added to the overall improving investor outlook.
After a day digesting those gains, stocks moved another leg higher on strong earnings from big retailers and growing optimism over the global economic recovery. Stocks drifted in the final two days of trading as investors worried about heightening tensions between the U.S. and China.
Different Views on the Economic Recovery
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Fed Chair Powell testified last week before the Senate Banking Committee, providing Senators with two different views of the nation’s economic outlook.
Secretary Mnuchin suggested a wait-and-see approach before moving ahead with additional fiscal measures. He wants to pause new spending in order to first assess the impact of the already-approved stimulus program. He believes that the economy will experience a “V-shaped” recovery.
Fed Chair Powell, on the other hand, expressed worries that waiting too long for additional fiscal measures may hamper the fragile economic recovery. It was the third time in a week that the Fed Chair suggested more federal spending is needed to help the economic recovery.
One of the challenges of assessing the U.S. economy using certain government reports, like the consumer price index or the employment report, is that they are considered “lag indicators.” Lag indicators provide good insight into where we’ve been, but are less helpful in looking at the current state of economic activity.
Looking at some “real-time” data can help investors better assess the here-and-now. For example, gasoline deliveries are trending higher, consumer confidence appears to have stabilized, and airlines are seeing more bookings. Even the supply of toilet paper seems less of a concern these days, with Google searches falling to near-normal levels.
THE WEEK AHEAD: KEY ECONOMIC DATA
Tuesday: Consumer Confidence. New Home Sales.
Thursday: Jobless Claims. Durable Goods Orders. Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
THE WEEK AHEAD: COMPANIES REPORTING EARNINGS
Tuesday: Autozone (AZO)
Wednesday: HP (HPQ), Workday (WDAY), Autodesk (ADSK)
Thursday: Salesforce.com (CRM), Costco (COST), Trip.com (TCOM), Okta (OKTA), Dollar General (DG), Dell Technologies (DELL), VMware (VMW)
“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.”
– Eleanor Roosevelt
Recipe of the Week
- 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 bell pepper, chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and grated
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 jalapeño, chopped
- 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 15.5 oz. can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15.5 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15.5 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 28 oz. can fire-roasted tomatoes
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 2 Tbsp. chili powder
- 1 Tbsp. cumin
- 2 tsp. oregano
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. black pepper
- Heat oil over medium heat in a large pot.
- Add onion, bell pepper, and carrots; sauté until soft.
- Add garlic and jalapeño and cook for one minute.
- Add tomato paste and stir well.
- Add tomatoes, beans, broth, chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for one half hour.
- Serving options: grated cheese, sour cream, or your favorite hot sauce.
Recipe adapted from delish.com
Protecting Your Data
- Always use security software with firewall and anti-virus protections. Make sure your security software is always on and set to automatically update. You may want to go so far as to encrypt sensitive files such as tax records you store on your computer.
- Learn to recognize and avoid phishing emails, threatening calls, and texts from thieves posing as legitimate organizations such as your bank, credit card company and even the IRS. Do not click on links or download attachments from unknown or suspicious emails.
- Protect your personal data. Don’t routinely carry your Social Security card, and make sure your tax records are secure. Shop at reputable online retailers. Treat your personal information like you do your cash; don’t leave it lying around.
Tip adapted from IRS.gov
Moving On After a Poor Shot
Protecting Your Skin from the Sun
Tip adapted from Melanoma Research Alliance
Using Up Kitchen Odds and Ends
Tip adapted from RealSimple.com