The Week on Wall Street
Stocks were mixed last week amid a busy week of earnings, some troubling economic data, and seemingly little progress on a new fiscal stimulus package.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.16%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 increased by 1.73%. The Nasdaq Composite Index surged 3.69% for the week. The MSCI EAFE Index, which tracks developed stock markets overseas, dipped 0.75%.
Stocks Buffeted by Crosswinds
Stocks rode a roller coaster last week, reacting to a conflicting stream of corporate events and economic data.
Investors were optimistic on Monday about the ability of mega-cap technology companies to thrive in an uncertain economy, but worried on Tuesday about pending Congressional testimony involving the CEOs of these firms.
On the economic front, a strong June durable goods orders report on Monday bolstered investor sentiment. But the optimism faded on a disappointing jobless claims number and a troubling second-quarter GDP number that-while anticipated-was a bit unsettling.
Following some exceptional earnings results from the mega-cap technology companies, stocks managed to rally in the final hour of trading on Friday.
U.S. Dollar Continues Its Decline
Since peaking in mid-March, the U.S. dollar has dropped nearly 9%. Some of the potential beneficiaries of a weak dollar are global American businesses whose products and services become less expensive in overseas markets.
Conversely, international companies may suffer lower sales in the U.S. as their products become more expensive. It’s a mixed bag of potential outcomes, but Wall Street has become more and more focused on the dollar’s trajectory.
August has historically been a particularly volatile month. For instance, in 2019, the S&P 500 posted moves of more than one percent in 22 trading days.
One of the possible reasons is that many traders are away on vacation, resulting in light volume, which may amplify market volatility. But this year, it’s uncertain whether traders will be away on vacation due to the pandemic. Should markets become volatile in the weeks ahead, investors may want to remind themselves of the seasonal trends that may be at work.
THIS WEEK: KEY ECONOMIC DATA
Monday: Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) Manufacturing Index. Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Manufacturing Index.
Wednesday: Automated Data Processing (ADP) Employment Report. Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) Services Index. Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Non-Manufacturing Index.
Thursday: Jobless Claims.
Friday: Employment Situation Report.
THIS WEEK: COMPANIES REPORTING EARNINGS
Monday: The Clorox Company (CLX), American International Group (AIG).
Tuesday: The Walt Disney Company (DIS), Twilio (TWLO), Prudential Financial (PRU), Emerson Electric (EMR).
Wednesday: CVS Health (CVS), Humana (HUM), Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN), Wayfair (W).
Thursday: Bristol Myers Squibb (BMY), Booking Holdings (BKNG), Becton Dickinson (BDX), T-Mobile (TMUS).
“Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip.”
– Will Rogers
Recipe of the Week
Prickly Pear Popsicles
- 8 prickly pears
- ½ cup lime juice
- ½ cup water
- ⅓ cup agave
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- Carefully slice the prickly pear flesh from the skin (be careful of the thorns!).
- Blend the pears, lime juice, water, agave, and salt together in a blender. Puree until smooth.
- Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer. Once strained, pour the liquid into popsicle molds.
Know Your Taxpayer Bill of Rights
- Receive prompt, courteous, and professional service from the IRS
- Easily understand what the IRS is saying
- Receive clear and easy-to-understand communication from the IRS
- Speak to a supervisor if you receive inadequate service
- Have your questions answered promptly, accurately, and thoroughly
- Objective advice
Tips for Good Golf Posture
- Rather than bending over the club, make sure that you have the same spine angle as you would while standing up, just hinged from your hips over the club.
- Your hands should hang straight down from your shoulder rather than reaching past your shoulders.
- If your spine is in the correct position, you should have much more rotation. More rotation means more power and a more accurate shot.
- Because your arms are hanging straight down and aren’t holding tension, your body should rotate with your core before your upper body.
Tip adapted from GolfTipsMag.com
Quick and Easy Meal Planning Tips
- Start small by planning just a few meals a week. Three or four lunches should get you in the habit of meal planning.
- Start simple. If you do research on meal planning recipes, you might feel overwhelmed with all your options. Instead, focus on the main food groups and choose your favorite options. An example might be salmon, sweet potatoes, and broccoli.
- Invest in high-quality containers. You can either choose containers with separate sections for each item, or glass containers you can just throw in the microwave.
- Keep a well-stocked pantry, including legumes, whole grains, proteins, vegetables, and fruit, for a last-minute meal.