The Markets (as of market close December 4, 2020)

November closed on a sour note as investors took profits from stocks last Monday. The
Russell 2000, which gained more than 18.0% in November, fell nearly 2.0% on the day.
The Global Dow dropped 1.7%, followed by the Dow (-0.9%), the S&P 500 (-0.5%), and
the Nasdaq (-0.1%). Treasuries and the dollar advanced, while crude oil prices fell.
Health care and information technology were the only market sectors to post gains.
Energy, financials, industrials, and utilities each dropped at least 1%.
Stocks rebounded last Tuesday to start December off with a bang. Renewed hope for a
stimulus deal and the growing potential of a COVID-19 virus vaccine added to investors’
confidence. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq reached record highs by the close of trading.
Communication services, financials, real estate, and information technology led the
sectors. The dollar slid to its lowest level in more than two-years. Crude oil prices fell,
but Treasury yields advanced. Among the benchmark indexes, the Global Dow added
1.4%, followed by the Nasdaq (1.3%), the S&P 500 (1.1%), the Russell 2000 (0.9%),
and the Dow (0.6%).
The S&P 500 hit another record last Wednesday as stocks closed generally higher for
the second consecutive day. The Global Dow continued to surge, climbing 1.5%,
followed by the Dow (0.2%), the S&P 500 (0.2%), and the Russell 2000 (0.1%). Only
the Nasdaq ended the day slightly in the red, falling a mere 0.1%. Treasury yields and
crude oil prices rose, while the dollar sank. Energy led the sectors, advancing over
3.0%. Financials and communication services each gained more than 1.0% on the day.
Stocks were mixed last Thursday as energy, industrials, and real estate advanced,
while materials and utilities sunk. The Global Dow climbed 0.7%, the Russell 2000
gained 0.6%, the Dow and the Nasdaq edged up 0.3% and 0.2%, respectively. The
S&P 500 declined 0.1%. Treasury yields and the dollar declined, while crude oil prices
rose nearly 1.0%.
Equities closed the week as they started, posting impressive gains by the close of
trading last Friday. The Russell 2000 advanced 2.3%, the Global Dow climbed 1.1%,
the S&P 500 gained 0.9%, the Dow rose 0.8%, and the Nasdaq added 0.7%. Treasury
yields surged, reaching their highest level in nine months. Crude oil prices climbed 0.9%
but the dollar fell. Among the sectors, energy gained more than 5.0%, offsetting a drop
in consumer stocks.
Stocks climbed higher for the week, as investors seem to be gambling on fiscal stimulus
in the near term and a virus vaccine within the next several months. The Dow closed
well above the 30,000 mark, setting a new high in the process. The S&P 500 and the
Nasdaq also set new record highs last week. The Russell 2000 and the Global Dow
each advanced more than 2.0% on the week. The Nasdaq is nearly 40.0% higher than
its 2019 year-end closing value, and both the S&P 500 and the Russell 2000 are more
than 13.0% ahead of their respective year-end marks.
Crude oil prices advanced again last week, closing at $46.04 per barrel by late Friday
afternoon, up from the prior week’s price of $45.53 per barrel. The price of gold
(COMEX) rebounded last week, closing at $1,840.40, up from the prior week’s price of
$1,781.90. The national average retail price for regular gasoline was $2.120 per gallon
on November 30, $0.018 higher than the prior week’s price but $0.455 less than a year
ago. Click here for full article: Winthrop Partners Economic Update 12-7-2020