Weekly Market Report: June 7th, 2024

Financial markets digested important labor market and economic survey data last week with what might be categorized as a “bad news is good news” mentality (until it’s not…). The S&P 500 (+1.3%) enjoyed a narrow rally to a new record high supported by large technology and shadow technology names across consumer discretionary, communication services, and information technology sectors. International developed (0.11%) and emerging (0.60%) both participated but were weighed down slightly by a strengthening USD (+0.20%). The Treasury yield curve flattened as longer tenured yields fell more than the short end leaving the 10yr (-8bps) yielding 4.43% and the 2yr (-2bps) yielding 4.87%. Commodities traded lower on the week (-1.54%) with WTI down 1.9% to $75 and industrial metals broadly lower.

Market Anecdotes

  • Last week’s top-heavy S&P rally was a microcosm of the nature of the large cap U.S. equity market which has reached a six-decade threshold in terms of index concentration.
  • Equity and bond markets seem to be laser-focused on translating the economic growth backdrop to monetary policy where stronger growth poses ‘overheating’ risks, higher/stickier inflation, and commensurately tight monetary policy.
  • Higher real yields and significantly less competitive relative earnings yield have made bond markets much more appealing to investors of all sorts.
  • The closely watched monthly employment report conveying robust job and wage growth translated to a bounce in UST yields and more speculation about the forward path for rates, a significant consideration impacting potential returns for bond market investors.
  • The ECB and BoC both joined team dove last week by moderating the degree of restrictive rates with 25 bps rate cuts, fully anticipated by markets.
  • One might think there should be very little economic gloom with unemployment under 4% for over two years, median wages up 18% (more for low wage workers), and real consumer spending up 11% right? Wrong. Whether it’s pandemic angst, hyperpartisan echo chambers, negative news bias, federal government dysfunction, or persistent inflation, negative sentiment remains prevalent in many circles.
  • Markets won’t be pricing U.S. politics or elections until after July, but European Parliament elections (June 6-9) are seeing a rise in anti-establishment European right-wing parties in response to high energy costs and immigration discontent.
  • Modi was re-elected for a third term as India’s prime minister making him the third longest serving PM in the country’s history. While the BJP lost its majority, Modi and the coalition are expected to continue to pursue constructive reform policies going forward.
  • An FT article addressed the announced phase out of OPEC+ production curbs noting their clout is running out with the U.S. now the single largest oil producer in the world.

Economic Release Highlights

  • The May jobs report came in stronger than consensus (272,000 vs 182,000) and average hourly earnings were warm at 0.4% (0.3%) MoM and 4.1% (3.9%) YoY. The unemployment rate moved one tick higher to 4% (3.9% expected) and labor participation fell two ticks to 62.5%.
  • The April JOLT Survey reported 8.059M job openings in April, notably fewer than the 8.4M forecast and past several months.
  • May ISM Manufacturing Index registered 48.7, below consensus forecast of 49.8. ISM Services rebounded and beat consensus (53.8 vs 50.7).
  • Non-U.S. PMIs (C,M,S) released last week included India (60.5, 57.5, 60.2), Eurozone (52.2, 47.3, 53.2), U.K. (53.0, 51.2, 52.9), China (C,S: 54.1, 54.0), and JPM Global (53.7, 50.9, 54.1).
  • Factory Orders in April grew in line with consensus at 0.7%, a slightly slower growth rate than March’s 1.6%.
This communication is provided for informational purposes only and is not an offer, recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell any security or other investment. This communication does not constitute, nor should it be regarded as, investment research or a research report, a securities or investment recommendation, nor does it provide information reasonably sufficient upon which to base an investment decision. Additional analysis of your or your client’s specific parameters would be required to make an investment decision. This communication is not based on the investment objectives, strategies, goals, financial circumstances, needs or risk tolerance of any client or portfolio and is not presented as suitable to any other particular client or portfolio.
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