The zero Covid lockdowns in China continue and the restrictive Covid controls caused widespread unrest across the country causing the stock markets to open lower today. The continued Hawkish rhetoric on the direction of US interest rates from St.Louis Fed's Jim Bullard provided the ammo for an acceleration in the move lower. Bullard stated today financial markets are underestimating the chances that policymakers will need to be more aggressive next year in raising interest rates to curb inflation.
However, last week, Investors assessed things a bit differently as growing optimism that the Fed may finally be ready to ease future interest rate hikes sent stocks higher in the traditionally quiet week before Thanksgiving.
We have a very busy calendar of economic data this week featuring 3rd Quarter GDP estimates, Federal Chairman Powell, as well as other Federal reserve members, are all speaking. We also get inflation data and on Friday the latest employment report, the last one before the next meeting of the Federal Reserve in mid-December.
At week's end, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.78%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 added 1.53%. The Nasdaq Composite index improved 0.72% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, advanced 2.33%.1,2,3
In light holiday-week trading, stocks rallied as investors grew more hopeful of a slowdown in a future rate hike. The release of the minutes from the early November meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) fed investors' optimism. Fed officials suggested such easing may be coming soon.
Investor sentiment was also lifted by unexpectedly strong retailer earnings, upside surprises in new economic data, and a better-than-expected consumer sentiment reading. Investors looked past the continuing Covid-related challenges that have stymied China's economic recovery and its attendant implications for global growth.
Easing in the Offing?
The Fed meeting minutes, released before the Thanksgiving holiday, showed that most Fed officials felt a slowing in interest rate increases would be appropriate. The minutes also suggested that such a deceleration in rate hikes may begin with December's meeting with a 50 basis point hike rather than a fifth consecutive boost of 75 basis points.4
The primary reasons for slowing the pace of rate hikes were the growing risk that the Fed may increase rates beyond what was required to reduce inflation to its two percent target and signs that inflation pressures were easing.5
This Week: Key Economic Data
Tuesday: Consumer Confidence.
Wednesday: Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Automated Data Processing (ADP) Employment Report. Jobs Openings And Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS).
Thursday: Jobless Claims. Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) Manufacturing.
Friday: Employment Situation.
Source: Econoday, November 25, 2022
This Week: Companies Reporting Earnings
Tuesday: Workday, Inc. (WDAY), Intuit, Inc. (INTU), CrowdStrike (CRWD).
Wednesday: Salesforce, Inc. (CRM).
Thursday: Marvell Technology, Inc. (MRVL), Dollar General Corporation (DG), The Kroger Co. (KR).
Source: Zacks, November 25, 2022
"Challenging power structures from the inside, working the cracks within the system, however, requires learning to speak multiple languages of power convincingly."
– Patricia Hill Collins
Learn About Backup Withholding
Backup withholding is when a taxpayer must withhold at the current rate of 24%, which is taken from any future payments, to ensure that the IRS receives the tax due on this income. This can happen for many reasons, including if you fail to provide a correct taxpayer identification number (TIN) or if you fail to report or underreport interest and dividend income.
Many types of payments are subject to backup withholding, and you can view the complete list on the IRS’ website, but some include:
* This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest that you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.
Tip adapted from IRS.gov6
Easy Houseplants That Anyone Can Grow
Houseplants can bring a bit of joy and nature to every corner of your home. Even if you don’t consider yourself someone with a green thumb, this list of easy houseplants can help get you started. They are low-maintenance. Perfect for those of us who have killed a few too many plants in the past! Here are some of the easiest houseplants that anyone can grow:
Most of these plants are easy to take care of because they are tolerant of watering and light conditions. Some are fine in indirect or low-light situations, while some prefer a sunny corner. Research each one to see which ones fit into your home.
Tip adapted from Bloomscape7
A lone pine tree stands on a cliff. The wind is blowing from the east through the mountains. Which way do the tree’s leaves blow?
Last week’s riddle: It has no crown, yet when the chips are down it is more powerful than a king or queen. What is it? Answer: An ace in a deck of cards.
Three Guanaco and Torres del Pine National Park, southern Chilean Patagonia.
Footnotes and Sources
2. The Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2022
3. The Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2022
4. The Wall Street Journal, November 23, 2022
5. The Wall Street Journal, November 23, 2022
6. IRS.gov, July 14, 2022
7. Bloomscape, August 8, 2022
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