[Friday, September 6, 2019]
Today’s action on Wall Street was marked by cautious trading as investors digest the latest economic data and news on trade. The August Jobs Report disappointed with Nonfarm Payrolls showing 130,000 jobs added where the forecast had been 160,000. Prior months were adjusted modestly lower. Unemployment held steady at 3.7%; the lowest rate in some 50 years as Participation edged higher at 62.3% versus the prior 62% In trade news the U.S. and China agreed to meet in Washington to renew talks. And in comments today Fed Chair Jerome Powell was noncommittal but indicated the Fed is not expecting a recession though there are potential threats, global and domestic, that warrant vigilance. A late session swoon left the benchmark indices mixed though higher for a second consecutive week following four weeks of losses. The broader market is 1.5% from an all-time high. By the numbers the S&P 500 added +2.71 to 2,978.71 and the Dow gained +69.31 to 26,797.46. The Nasdaq Composite slipped -13.75 to 8,103.07 and the Russell 2000 dropped -5.58 to 1,505.17. Major sectors were mostly higher led today by the Energy group with strength in Materials and Consumer Staples. Utilities were off the most. Crude prices were higher; WTI futures settled at 56.62 per barrel. As investors move away from safe-haven securities gold continued to fall, settling for the day and the week at 1,514.90. Silver also continued a reversion to the mean, down more than -3% today for a close at 18.22. Yields were lower across the curve, the 10-Year Bond losing -1.5 bps to offer 1.55% Global rates were down on the day but up for the week. The VIX Index finished lower at 15.00.