Weekly Commentary

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Monday, April 27, 2015

It was a solid week in the equity markets, as better-than-expected earnings from a number of bellwether tech companies sent bourses higher. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq ended the week at record levels; the Nasdaq set a new high-water mark on Thursday — for the first time since 2000 — only to top it a day later. Meanwhile, continued unimpressive economic data had the interest rate on the benchmark ten-year Treasury drifting lower on the week, though it continued to trade in a fairly tight range.

Monday, April 20, 2015

What looked like a decent week in the equity markets was derailed by Friday’s global selloff. Heightened concerns over a Greek default combined with news that China had tightened restrictions on margin lending to send investors in search of safe havens. The interest rate on the benchmark ten-year Treasury drifted lower over the week, while yield on ten-year German bunds set a series of all-time lows and settled at about 0.08%.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Major domestic equity indexes continued to make up ground lost during March, posting a second consecutive week of gains to inch closer to record highs. European stocks, meanwhile, extended its surge into unchartered territory on the back of central bank accommodation.

Monday, April 6, 2015

After a disappointing March, major domestic indexes were up slightly during the holiday-shortened week, though choppiness remained a key theme. U.S. Treasury bonds, meanwhile, rallied as lukewarm data flow had investors rethinking the timing of a Fed rate hike.

Monday, March 30, 2015

U.S. stocks finished the week in the red, pulled down by geopolitical concerns and worries over sluggish profit earnings. Markets in Europe and Asia were mixed, with Shanghai again the leader. The yield on the widely watched ten-year U.S. Treasury started the week at 1.89%, and rose slightly to 1.96%. Oil prices posted a gain, getting a temporary lift from rising tensions in Yemen.

Monday, March 23, 2015

As expected, the Federal Reserve dropped the “patient” forward guidance language in its policy announcement. Noting that tightening remains unlikely at the April meeting, officials said they want to see further labor market improvement, and be “reasonably confident” of inflation moving toward its 2% target, before lift-off. The statement featured a downgrade of the Fed’s economic assessment.

Monday, March 16, 2015

A volatile week in the U.S. equity markets ended on the down side. The continued strength in the dollar had investors concerned about corporate earnings; the greenback finished at a 12-year high against the euro. Stocks saw greater success overseas: Europe posted a sixth consecutive positive week, while Japan’s Nikkei closed at its highest level in 15 years. Yield on the benchmark ten-year U.S. Treasury closed near 2.10%, down from last week’s — and this year’s — peak around 2.24%.

Monday, March 9, 2015

The Dow, Nasdaq and S&P 500 closed lower for the first week of March, breaking February’s run of gains. It was the steepest drop in two months for the S&P 500, as a robust nonfarm payrolls report increased the likelihood of a mid-2015 fed funds rate hike. European and Asian equities were mixed. The yield on the benchmark ten-year U.S. Treasury climbed to 2.25% following the jobs report, its highest level since December. Oil and gold prices closed down for the week.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Though markets were mixed last week, the strong February rebound had major indexes well into positive territory for the year to date and many at or near all-time highs. The yield on the benchmark tenyear U.S. Treasury note fell slightly during the week, while bonds from a variety of European governments — including Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Ireland — all touched new historical lows. Oil prices continued to be volatile.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Stock markets extended their gains into the third week of February. In the U.S., a holiday-shortened trading week produced solid progress for most equity indices; both the DJIA and S&P 500 established new records, while the Nasdaq closed just 1.9% short of its March 2000 peak. European and Asian bourses posted similar results to establish new multi-year highs. Yield on the benchmark ten-year U.S. Treasury was volatile, but ultimately higher; it’s risen nearly 50 bps over the past three weeks. Oil prices remained under pressure and finished lower.

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