Market Commentary, 1/2/19

While some traders took the holiday week off, there was no shortage of action. Stocks made huge swings—mostly on the upside—as the Dow climbed 2.7%, the S&P 500 was up 2.9%, and the Nasdaq gained 4% last week, easing some of the pain from the previous week’s losses.

Thursday’s 1.1% gain on the Dow marked the sixth consecutive trading session in which the index moved 1.0%higher or lower. That’s the longest such streak since June 2016. It ended on Friday, when the Dow slipped 0.3%. This week started on a positive note with all three indices closing in positive territory on the last trading day of the year.

In positive economic news,unemployment numbers remained strong as 2018 came to an end. Initial jobless claims fell to 216,000 and continuing unemployment claims, people already receiving benefits, declined to 1.7 million, a 45-year low. Jobs from an improvement in nationwide industrial production played a role in strengthening the labor market. (Source: Sherman Sheet)

The first major US economic report of the New Year is scheduled for Friday, when the latest monthly labor market data will be released. Economists are forecasting that the economy generated around 185,000 new jobs in December, up from 155,000 in November.Wage growth is expected to pick up slightly relative to November. (www.wsj.com)

At the start of December,analysts expected Q4 profits at companies in the S&P 500 would rise 14%compared with the previous year. As of December 27th, the projected gain had slipped to 12%. While the projections declined, this would still mark the fifth straight quarter of double-digit earnings growth for the index. (www.factset.com)

The partial US government shutdown is expected to be the first order of business when a new Congress is sworn in on January 3rd. The subsequent spending bill talks and Q4 earnings should give us some clarity for the New Year.

Happy 2019! May this year be better than the last!

Regards,
Jeremiah Patterson, CFP®

Copelin Financial Advisors
514 Brooks Street
Sugar Land, TX 77478
Phone: 281 240-2902
Fax: 281 240-2856
jeremiah@copelinfinancial.com

Securities offered through ProEquities, Inc., a RegisteredBroker-Dealer and Member FINRA & SIPC Advisory Services offered throughHarvest Investment Services, LLC., a Registered Investment Advisor CopelinFinancial Advisors, Inc and Harvest Investment Services, LLC are independent ofProEquities, Inc.

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