The bears in this market keep getting the rug pulled out from under them. The markets once again shook off the recent malaise from some of the air being taken out of the highfliers. Today’s unemployment claims report was better than expected at 304K and the Philly Fed manufacturing report was in-line with positive expectations. Meanwhile, corporate earnings growth for the first quarter is struggling. So far with 81/500 companies reporting, growth is at -2.2% with consensus for all 500 at -1.7%. This is a concerning outlook for fundamentals although it is still early in the reporting season and corporations have shown a remarkable resilience in beating expectations. Please see our recent monthly article, "Bears Again Confounded by Market Reversal."
The Latest Market Commentary From Our Strategists
Weekly Commentary & Statistics
A mid-week equity rally quickly went south in the final two trading sessions. The S&P 500 and DJIA both shed in the neighborhood of 2.5% for the week, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq continued to bear the brunt of the market’s recent reticence, losing more than 3%. The CBOE Volatility Index spiked over 17, while yield on the benchmark ten-year Treasury fell ten basis points and the 30-year bond yield hit a nine-month low.
Monthly Commentary & Outlook
The first quarter delivered good news and bad, but nothing that would derail equity markets from their pursuit of new highs.
Though bonds outperformed equities in the quarter, positive performance was broad-based.
Resurgence in the manufacturing sector — driven in part by the monumental gas boom — is finding its way into corporate profits.
The more acute issues in the emerging markets have eased, fueling a V-shaped comeback by their equity markets.