US Stocks posted another volatile week, but ended with gains after positive economic numbers reduced near term recession fears. The S&P 500 gained 1.9% and the Dow rose 1.6% for the week. Internationally, Japan dropped 2.3% and Europe jumped 2.1% for the week. Oil rallied as well ending the week up 5.8% at $47.96 a barrel. The yield on the 10-year Treasury, after hitting its lowest point since last January, ended the week lower at 2.66%.
The December jobs reported well outpaced expectations with 312,000 new hires. The unemployment rate rose to 3.9% from 3.7% as the labor participation rate increased. Wage growth was up 0.4% in December over November, more than expected and is up 3.2% from a year earlier. It’s the fastest pace of wage growth since 2008. October and November were also revised higher by a combined 58,000.
A gauge of Chinese manufacturing showed the sector contracted for the first time since May 2017.
Apple shocked investors cutting its quarterly revenue forecast for the first time in over 15 years for its fiscal first quarter driven by weakness from iPhone sales in China. The surprise revenue cut was another sign of potential weakness from China.
December manufacturing numbers from the euro zone were the weakest in more than a year and US manufacturing in December posted its largest one month drop in growth since 2008
US auto sales eased in December, but held steady for the full year with 17.3 million sales countering predictions the market would cool.
Fed Chairmen Powell said in a speech the Fed will be “patient as we watch to see how the economy evolves,” and they are “prepared to adjust policy quickly and flexibly” If needed. Half of investors believe the Fed will actually cut rates in 2019.
Bristol-Myers Squibb agreed to purchase Celgene for $74 billion combing two major pharmaceutical companies focused on cancer drugs.