Weekly Economic Update

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The Week on Wall Street

The failure to reach an agreement on a new fiscal stimulus bill soured investor sentiment and sent stocks modestly lower for the week.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.95%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 lost 0.53%. The Nasdaq Composite index slipped 1.06% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, declined 0.44%. 1,2,3

Markets Disapointed with Stimulus Impasse

Stock prices ebbed and flowed all week, pulled by the gravity of fiscal stimulus talks in Washington, D.C. As investors saw improving prospects for a new fiscal stimulus bill, stocks rose. As prospects dimmed, stocks turned lower.

Hopes for striking a deal were raised late in the week as comments from a key negotiator suggested that a deal might be getting closer to fruition. The week ended, however, without an agreement, cementing a disappointing week of performance.

Market sentiment was further weighed down by the continued rise in COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and Europe, though anxieties were tempered by the belief that a full economic lockdown was unlikely. 

New Jobless Claims Fall

Markets have been focused on weekly initial jobless claims as an important input into the state of economic recovery. After weeks of 800,000+ new jobless claims, last week’s report reflected an improving labor market, as new jobless claims rose by 787,000, below consensus estimates of 875,000, while continuing jobless claims fell by more than one million. 4

The report wasn’t entirely positive, however, as more than 500,000 individuals were added to the emergency assistance program that extends unemployment benefits to those who have run out of state unemployment benefits. 5

Tip of the Week

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WESTconsin Investment Advisors may be reached at 800-924-0022 or WESTconsininvestments.com

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This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. The information herein has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note - investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All market indices discussed are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment. Indices do not incur management fees, costs and expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks. The Nasdaq Composite Index is a market-weighted index of all over-the-counter common stocks traded on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System. The Standard & Poor's 500 (S&P 500) is a market-cap weighted index composed of the common stocks of 500 leading companies in leading industries of the U.S. economy. NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (NYMEX) is the world's largest physical commodity futures exchange and the preeminent trading forum for energy and precious metals, with trading conducted through two divisions – the NYMEX Division, home to the energy, platinum, and palladium markets, and the COMEX Division, on which all other metals trade. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards. This material represents an assessment of the market environment at a specific point in time and is not intended to be a forecast of future events, or a guarantee of future results. MarketingPro, Inc. is not affiliated with any person or firm that may be providing this information to you. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional.
CITATIONS:
1. The Wall Street Journal, October 23, 2020
2. The Wall Street Journal, October 23, 2020
3. The Wall Street Journal, October 23, 2020
4. CNBC, October 22, 2020
5. CNBC, October 22, 2020

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