Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through December 7th

US stocks closed the week relatively flat after strong economic news to end the week helped the market recover from concerns over negative trade news.  The S&P 500 was up 0.2%, while the Dow ticked down 0.1% for the week.  Abroad, the FTSE All-World Ex-US rose 0.5% for the week.  The 10-year Treasury yield rose over the week to end at 1.84%.  Oil rose over 7% to finish the week at $59.20.

Trump announced the US would levy tariffs against Argentina and Brazil’s steel, at 25%, and aluminum, at 10%, accusing them of purposely devaluing their currencies.  Tariffs were also proposed against $2.4 billion of French goods of up to $100% over a digital-services tax aimed at US tech companies.

US manufacturing fell further into contraction territory in November surprising analysts.

Two surveys in China pointed to improving confidence and demand from manufacturers.  Manufacturing in the Eurozone contracted less than expected.

Trump made comments saying trade negotiations with China could last well into next year.

The November Jobs reports blew past expectations with 266,000 jobs added topping the 187,000 expected.  Previous months were also revised up 41,000.  The unemployment rate declined to 3.5% and wage growth edged up to 3.1%.

Japan approved a $120 billion stimulus plan, its most significant stimulus measure in over three years.

OPEC agreed to cut crude oil output by roughly 40% next year as it pushed for higher prices.

US consumer sentiment rose in early December.



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