Weekly Economic Update – 01/17/2024

The Week on Wall Street

Stocks pushed higher last week, led by big tech names and boosted by December inflation reports that were mixed but positive enough to shore up investor confidence in Fed rate cuts this year.

Stocks Rock and Roll

It was a rocky week that ended on a high note. Stocks rallied Monday after the prior week’s decline. Tech shares led, with the Nasdaq posting its best day since November 14.

On Tuesday, stocks initially tumbled but recovered most of their losses late in the session. Stocks rallied on Wednesday ahead of inflation news the following two trading days. Stocks fell initially on Thursday in response to a hotter-than-expected inflation report, reflecting investor concerns about the certainty, timing, and extent of Fed rate cuts later this year.

On Friday, the start of earnings season brought mixed results from a handful of major banks. By close, stocks had recovered most of their losses, ending the week with solid gains.1,2,3,4,5

A Tale of Two Inflation Reports

The biggest economic news last week was fresh inflation data. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.3 percent in December over the prior month and 3.4 percent compared with a year prior. That number was higher than the 3.2 percent increase economists expected and a few ticks elevated from the 3.1 percent figure in November.6,7

Core CPI for December, which excludes volatile food and energy components, rose 3.9%, a slight decrease from November’s 4.0% gain.

On Friday, the Producer Price Index (PPI), which measures inflation by domestic producers, showed a drop of 0.1% for December, possibly suggesting that the CPI’s uptick may have been an anomaly.6,7,8

Weekly Riddle

You can rearrange the letters in insatiable to make another ten-letter word that starts with the letter b. What is this ten-letter word?

Last week’s riddle: It has avenues, rivers, and parks, but no grass, water, or asphalt. What is it? 

Answer: A map.

John Dombroski Jr. may be reached at (480) 991-1055 or [email protected]

www.grandcanyonplanning.com

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