For the market week ended Friday, November 29, 2019
- US Equity Markets touched new all-time highs again in the holiday-shortened week last week despite no material developments on the US-China trade front, as investors become increasingly optimistic about the holiday spending season given the strength of the US consumer. The S&P 500 rose 1.0% for the week in relatively light trading, bringing its gains for the year to 25.3%. The Nasdaq rallied 1.7% for the week and is now up 30.6% for the year, while the Russell 2000 (small-cap stocks) increased a sharp 2.2% for the week to boost its gains for the year to 20.5%.
- Global equity markets were mixed last week despite generally negative news, as unease increased following the US passing a law in support of Hong Kong protestors. Despite that, Developed Markets rose 0.5% for the week to bring its gains for the year to 15.4%. Emerging Markets fell 0.8% for the week, in part due to a notable drop in oil prices. For the year, Emerging Markets are up 7.7%.
- Energy prices dropped sharply last week, down 4.3%, ahead of this week's OPEC meeting following the resignation of the Iraqi prime minister, suggesting ongoing unrest in the country may subside. An ending to protests in Iraq could end the threats of disruption in oil production, which would put downward pressure on prices. Despite last week's decline, oil prices are still up 21.0% for the year.
Of Interes to Us...
- US Economic Growth for the third quarter was revised up to 2.1%, better than expectations, as the economy continues to outperform forecasters. US Consumers remain the driver of economic growth, as real disposable personal income increased 2.8% from a year ago, and real personal consumption increased 2.3% from a year ago.