The Markets (as of market close August 13, 2021)

Stocks closed mostly higher last week, with only the Nasdaq unable to end in the black. The Dow and the S&P 500 each closed the week at record highs, buoyed by a strong corporate earnings season. Treasury yields finished the week where they began, crude oil prices fell for the second consecutive week, the dollar and gold prices weakened. Consumer staples, financials, materials, industrials, and utilities led the sectors. All the benchmark indexes listed here remain well above their 2020 year-end closing values. The S&P 500, up nearly 19.0% since the beginning of the year, has nearly doubled since the pandemic lows of March 2020, with the energy sector the biggest climber during that period.

Equities opened last week mixed, with only the Nasdaq able to post a gain. The Dow (-0.3%), the S&P 500 (-0.1%), the Russell 2000 (-0.6%), and the Global Dow (-0.2%) each dipped lower. Several of the market sectors fell, led by energy, which declined 1.5%. Only health care, financials, and consumer staples advanced. Crude oil prices decreased nearly 3.0%, falling to $68.47 per barrel. The dollar and Treasury yields moved higher.

Stocks rebounded last Tuesday, with the S&P 500 and the Dow climbing to record highs. Energy, materials, financials, and industrials led the market sectors, each gaining more than 1.0%. Information technology slumped, dragging the Nasdaq down 0.5%. Crude oil prices, Treasury yields, and the dollar increased.

The S&P 500 and the Dow rose to new record highs last Wednesday on news that consumer price increases slowed in July, possibly reducing the urgency to ease stimulus measures currently in place. The Russell 2000 and the Global Dow also climbed higher. Only the Nasdaq slipped marginally. The yield on 10-year Treasuries and the dollar fell, while crude oil prices increased. Among the market sectors, materials, industrials, and financials continued to advance.

Wall Street ended last Thursday mostly higher, with the S&P 500 reaching a record high for the third consecutive session. The Nasdaq and the Dow also closed higher, while the Global Dow and the Russell 2000 edged lower. Passage of a $1 trillion infrastructure bill in the U.S. Senate helped boost industrials and materials, which would likely benefit from increased government spending on physical structures. The dollar and Treasury yields advanced, while crude oil prices slid.

Equities hovered near record highs in light trading last Friday. The Dow and the Nasdaq were flat, the S&P 500 inched up 0.2%, and the Global Dow rose 0.3%. The Russell 2000 dipped 0.9%. Yields on 10-year Treasuries, the dollar, and crude oil prices fell. The sectors closed mixed on the day, with consumer staples, health care, real estate, information technology, communication services, materials, and utilities gaining, while consumer discretionary, energy, financials, and industrials declined.

The national average retail price for regular gasoline was $3.172 per gallon on August 9, $0.013 per gallon more than the prior week’s price and $1.006 higher than a year ago. Gasoline production decreased during the week ended August 6, averaging 10.0 million barrels per day, down from the prior week’s average of 10.2 million barrels per day. U.S. crude oil refinery inputs averaged 16.2 million barrels per day during the week ended August 6; this was 277,000 barrels per day more than the previous week’s average. For the week ended August 6, refineries operated at 91.8% of their operable capacity, up from the prior week’s level of 91.3%. Click here for full article: WinthropPartners Market and Economic Outlook 8-16-21