Author: Raffa Wealth Management

Raffa Wealth Management

Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through September 21st

US stocks eased over the week on oil price gains and signs of limited progress on a US/China trade deal.  The S&P 500 was down 0.5% and the Dow fell 1.0% for the week.  Abroad, Japan edged up 0.4% and Europe rose 0.3% for the week.  The 10-year Treasury yield declined on trade concerns and after the Fed cut its benchmark rate a quarter percent. The yield finished the week at 1.75%, down from 1.90% at the end of the previous week.  Oil rose 6.7% to finish at $64.28 after an attack on Saudi oil facilities knocked half of its capacity offline.

46,000 GM auto workers are on strike.  The strike could cost GM $100 million a day.

China’s central banks took steps to inject $28 billion into the banking system.

Saudi Arabia said it would only be a matter of weeks before it fully restores its oil output from before the recent attacks.

The Fed voted to cut its benchmark interest rate to a range from 1.75% to 2.0% at their September meeting and comments made by Chairmen Powell left open the possibility of additional rate cuts.  The Fed cited cushioning the US economy from a global economic slowdown and the US/China trade war.

Sales of previously owned homes rose 1.3% in August from July, much higher than expected, and was the first year over year gain in 17 months.

 

 

Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through September 14th

US stocks posted a third straight week of gains on reduced fears over U.S./China trade.  The S&P 500 was up 1.0% and the Dow gained 1.6% for the week.  Abroad, Japan surged 3.7% and Europe rose 1.2% for the week.  The 10-year Treasury yields continued to rise as investors grew less pessimistic about US growth prospects. The yield finished the week at 1.90%, up from 1.55% at the end of the previous week, the largest one-week yield gain in over 6 years.

The ECB cut its benchmark interest rate by 0.1% to -0.5% and launched a new bond-buying package of $22 billion a month of eurozone debt that is expected to “run for as long as necessary.”  It’s the largest simulative move the central bank has made in three and a half years.

Trump announced the US would delay by two weeks tariffs set to begin 10/1 on $250 billion of Chinese imports.

China will exempt certain agricultural products from tariffs.

 

 

Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through September 7th

US stocks rose over the week as investors expect the Fed to cut its benchmark rate at its meeting at the end of the month and on improved trade sentiment.  The S&P 500 rose 1.8% and the Dow climbed 1.5% for the week.  Abroad, Japan jumped 2.4% and Europe gained 2.0% for the week.  The 10-year Treasury yield rose as the economic mood turned slightly less pessimistic to finish the week at 1.55%.

Employers added 130,000 employees in August, below expectations and June and July hiring numbers were revised down.  The unemployment rate remained at 3.7% and wage growth held steady at 3.2%.

The Fed is likely to cut the Fed Funds rate by a quarter percentage point at their next meeting later this month.

The US and China agreed to hold trade talks in Washington in October, reigniting hopes of a deal.

British lawmakers took the first step in ensuring that the country doesn’t exit the EU without a plan in place, thwarting the PM’s plan to potentially leave the country bloc without a deal

The eurozone purchasing managers index showed contraction, but it was at a lesser rate than July.

A survey of Chinese manufacturers showed manufacturing reached a five-month high in August.

US manufacturing contracted for the first time in three years in August.

Japanese manufacturers cut spending for the first time in two years in the second quarter.

China’s central bank released the equivalent of $126 billion to banks in hopes of spurring its economy.