The Markets (as of market close August 7, 2020)
Last week began with stocks vaulting higher for the tenth Monday in a row. The Nasdaq reached a record high as tech stocks surged. The dollar gained value following a poor July while prices for Treasuries dipped pushing yields higher. Investors were encouraged by news of progress made toward another round of financial stimulus to further help offset the financial and economic toll resulting from the pandemic. Of the indexes listed here, the Russell 2000 led the way, climbing 1.8%, followed by the Nasdaq, the Dow, the Global Dow, and the S&P 500, which advanced 0.7% by the end of last Monday’s trading.
Stocks closed higher last Tuesday, led by the energy and communications sectors. For most of the day, equities were surging. However, the latest stalemate in negotiations over new COVID-19 stimulus worried investors, putting a halt on the market gains. Nevertheless, each of the benchmark indexes listed here closed the day ahead, led by the Global Dow, followed by the Russell 2000 and the Dow. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq inched up 0.4%.
Last Wednesday, investors pushed stocks higher on renewed hopes for a quick passage of pandemic stimulus relief and progress on a COVID-19 vaccine. Cyclical, energy, and value stocks posted notable gains. Each of the indexes enjoyed positive returns, led by the Russell 2000, which gained 1.9%, followed by the Dow (1.4%), the Global Dow (1.0%), the S&P 500 (0.6%), and the Nasdaq (0.5%). Crude oil and gold prices pushed ahead. Treasury prices fell, lifting yields higher.
Large cap and tech stocks pushed higher last Thursday while the rest of the market sagged. The S&P 500 climbed for the fifth straight day, gaining 0.6%, while the Dow jumped 0.7% and the Nasdaq gained 1.0%. The Russell 2000 and the Global Dow each dipped 0.1%. Crude oil prices, the dollar, and Treasury yields all fell.
Stocks were a mixed bag last Friday as the Dow, the S&P 500, and the Russell 2000 posted end-of-day gains, while the Nasdaq and the Global Dow lost value. Investors showed some concern following President Trump’s order banning U.S. citizens from using TikTok or WeChat. Tech stocks lagged as did communications stocks.
Overall, stocks rose higher week-over-week. Each of the indexes listed here enjoyed notable gains. The Russell 2000 was the week’s big winner, ratcheting up 6.0%, followed by the Dow, the Global Dow, the Nasdaq, and the S&P 500. Year to date, the Nasdaq is nearly 23.0% ahead of its 2019 closing value. The S&P 500 has added 4.0% since last year’s close, while the Rusell 2000 and the Dow are close to recouping pandemic-related losses.
Crude oil prices ended the week at $41.45 per barrel by late Friday afternoon, up from the prior week’s price of $40.41. The price of gold (COMEX) advanced for the eighth consecutive week, closing at $2,041.30, up from the prior week’s price of $1,989.90. The national average retail price for regular gasoline was $2.176 per gallon on August 3, $0.001 higher than the prior week’s price but $0.512 less than a year ago.  Click here for more: Winthrop Partners Weekly Update 8-10-2020