Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through May 2nd

All the news you need to stay informed about what’s currently driving the market – courtesy of Raffa Wealth Management, LLC.

US Stocks ended the week down driven by mixed economic news.  For the week the S&P 500 fell 0.5% and the Dow was down 0.3%.  Internationally, stock markets fell harder with Japan down 2.4% and Europe falling 3.4% for the week.  The 10 year Treasury yield rose over the week to finish at 2.12%, its highest level since mid March.  Oil has bounced back as well rising 25% in April and finished the week at $59.15 a barrel.  Article

In the first estimate of first quarter GDP the US barely grew, posting a 0.2% rate.  Well below expectations of 1.0% growth. Article

In the Fed’s policy statement released after its most recent meeting it pointed to a cooling economy as to a reason making it highly unlikely for rates to be increased midyear.  Current estimates are mixed between the fall and December. Article

Eurozone consumer prices were steady in April after 4 straight months of declines.

US manufacturing held steady from its reading in March after falling for five straight months.  However, a negative from the report showed falling employment.

The auto industry continues to see consumers opting for pickups and SUVs with the average price paid almost $1,000 higher than a year ago.  Sales have been aided by lower gas prices and friendly lending terms.

Japan posted its first increase in inflation in more than a year showing easing policies have helped.

Deutsche Bank, Apple, Ford, Pfizer, Merck, BP, Bristol-Myers, Total, Airbus, Shell Exxon and Berkshire Hathaway all posted positive first quarter profit reports, while Twitter, Honda, Samsung, LinkedIn and Conoco disappointed.




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