Weekly Commentary

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Monday, December 14, 2015

After slight gains last week U.S., European and Asian markets fell back to post losses for the second week of December. Oil continued its slide, at one point hitting a six-year low, on concerns about persistent oversupply. By contrast, gold prices rose for the week. The yield on the ten-year U.S. Treasury note fell from 2.27% to end at 2.13% by Friday’s close.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Stock markets had mixed results for the week. On Friday, U.S. stocks got a lift from a strong jobs report and recovered from a mid-week stumble. Asian bourses were mixed; European markets were weighed down by disappointment over the European Central Bank’s stimulus plan. Gold rose, but oil prices plunged as OPEC decided to maintain current production levels. The ten-year U.S. Treasury yield began the week at 2.22% and rose to 2.27% by Friday’s close.

Monday, November 30, 2015

U.S. stocks posted slight gains over a holiday-shortened week. Markets in Asia were mostly down on news that leading Chinese brokerages were being investigated for rules violations. European stocks declined somewhat in sympathy but still posted the best gains for the week. Gold and oil prices continued to fall. The ten-year U.S. Treasury yield, which began the week at 2.26 percent, eased to 2.22 percent by Friday’s market close.

Monday, November 23, 2015

U.S. equities finished higher this week following an outsized selloff the week before. Elsewhere, stock markets traced uneven paths but ended mostly up; European bourses saw more volatility but claimed the week’s best performers. Gold and oil prices kept falling. The ten-year U.S. Treasury yield ranged as high as 2.31% but ended the week down at 2.26%

Monday, November 16, 2015

After a step-down on Monday, stocks paused briefly then continued to fall, ending down to snap a six-week string of gains. Markets in Asia and Europe also declined; only Japan showed a gain for the week.

Monday, November 9, 2015

U.S. stocks posted a sixth straight week of gains. The primary performance catalysts for the week were strong U.S. job growth and unemployment reports, which unsettled markets a bit by further opening the door to a December rate liftoff. Asian and European markets were mixed for the week. Gold continued its recent slide; oil prices also declined.

Monday, November 2, 2015

The approach of Halloween did not spook U.S. stocks, which ended October with a fifth straight week of gains. Investors reacted positively to generally upbeat earnings and a supportive FOMC announcement. But the goblins held sway in Europe and Asia, where markets except Germany and Japan stumbled. Gold prices fell, oil prices climbed. The ten-year U.S. Treasury yield rose on the week, from 2.09% to 2.15%.

Monday, October 26, 2015

A generally upbeat stream of earnings announcements led to a fourth upbeat week for stocks as markets in the United States, Europe and Asia posted gains. Monetary policy played a supporting role, thanks to dovish takeaways from Thursday’s ECB meeting, followed on Friday by interest rate cuts and lower reserve requirements from the Peoples’ Bank of China ― while investors looked ahead to next week’s FOMC meeting. The yield on the ten-year U.S. Treasury bounced from 2.02% to settle at 2.09%. Gold and oil prices fell.

Monday, October 19, 2015

It was a busy week of earnings announcements, especially for financials, technology and industrials. It was also full of economic news: U.S. consumer confidence was encouraging but retail sales disappointed, leading to a mid-week setback. Nonetheless, U.S. stocks posted a third consecutive week of modest gains; Asian and European bourses generally fared somewhat better. The yield on the ten-year U.S. Treasury fell from 2.10 to 2.03 percent. Gold prices made solid gains, while oil prices declined.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Markets breathed a sigh of relief as progress was made toward a deal that would keep Greece in the euro zone. The Nasdaq delivered its best week since October while hitting a new all-time intraday high, and the S&P 500 had its strongest performance in four months to close in on a new high of its own.

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