Weekly Jobless Claims Fell to 15 Year Low

Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through April 4th

US stocks gained slightly over the week on some positive economic and corporate news.  The S&P 500 and Dow edged up 0.3% in the shortened week.  Internationally, Japan gained 0.8% and Europe was up 0.6%.  The 10 year Treasury yield sank to end the week on the job market news, falling to 1.85%, while the stock market was closed.  Investors now expect the Fed to not raise rates until at least December.

The March Jobs reports disappointed as the number of new hires plummeted to 126,000, the weakest hiring rate in 15 months.  Hiring estimates were revised down for both January and February as well. The unemployment rate remained steady at 5.5%.

Auto sales ticked up slightly in March.

US manufacturing growth fell for the fifth consecutive month and is at its lowest level since May 2013.

Weekly jobless claims fell to a 15 year low and factory orders gained 0.2% while a decline was expected.

Consumer spending was up only slightly in February as severe winter weather weighed on spending.  It rose 0.1% after two monthly declines.

The personal consumption expenditures price index, the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge, rose 0.3% in February, but is still well below the Fed’s target.

Reposted from the Raffa Wealth Management Blog.

All the news you need to stay informed about what’s currently driving the market – courtesy of Raffa Wealth Management, LLC

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