Broker Check

Market Recap

May 01, 2024

The stock market in the second half of April was bumpy. The beginning of the second half of April was down another week as tech stocks were hit hard by major selloffs as investors worried about rising tensions in the Middle East and stubborn inflationary pressures. With the stock market in volatile waters, money flowed into long-term bonds sending prices lower and yields higher.

Towards the end of the second half of April, each of the benchmark indexes climbed higher. Tensions in the Middle East eased, at least temporarily, as investors looked forward to a week of corporate earnings and key economic data. A strong set of earnings reports was not enough to overcome investor concerns about rising interest rates. Stocks fell sharply after a lower-than-expected gross domestic product for the first quarter. Strong earnings reports from some large tech companies helped propel stocks back.

The Federal Open Market Committee met this week and, to no surprise, decided to keep interest rates unchanged. Following their last meeting, the Fed projected three interest rate reductions during 2024. When Fed Chair, Jerome Powell was asked if he still agrees with this projection he did not provide a direct answer.1 Also out this week is the jobs data for April. Over 300,000 new jobs were added in March as the labor sector continued to show strength.

Reviewing returns for the second half of April, the markets were flat. As of market close on April 30th, the Dow gained 81 points (0.01%), the S&P 500 dropped 26 points (0.01%) and the NASDAQ lost 227 points (0.01%). 

The Fed keeps interest rates at a 23-year high for the sixth-straight meeting | CNN Business

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