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In the Markets – Week-Ending April 22

by Peter J. Creedon

Newsletter: In the Markets – Week-Ending April 22
Crystal Brook Advisors
We Make Financial Planning Crystal Clear™

United States: On the heels of a modest decline in February, existing home sales posted a 5.1 percent pickup in March. Inventory levels continue to report slight gains, which may help provide a lift to sales this spring.<small(1) Housing starts tumbled 8.8 percent in March to a 1.09 million-unit rate, led by a 9.2 percent decline in single-family starts.(2)

Europe: Volkswagen AG more than doubled provisions ($18.2 billion) to pay for the emissions-cheating scandal, leading to the biggest loss in the German automaker’s history while giving it a path toward assessing the full financial impact of the crisis.

Asia: China’s great ball of money is rushing into commodities futures. Singapore authorities raided a number of brokerages in a probe of possible breaches of the securities law.

Monday 04/18

• Treasury prices fell, leading yields to end higher after they logged their largest weekly jump in a month on Friday.(3)
• Nordstrom Inc. said that it expects to cut between 350 and 400 jobs as it undergoes changes to its operating model.(4)

Tuesday 04/19

• EBay Inc. shares are down 4.4% after the e-commerce company was downgraded to underweight from equal-weight at Morgan Stanley on concerns over weakness in its international marketplaces.(5)

Wednesday 04/20

• The Canadian dollar rose to its highest level versus its U.S. counterpart in nearly 10, leading commodity-linked currencies higher, tracking a rally in oil futures after official U.S. data showed domestic crude production fell for a sixth straight week.(6)

Thursday 04/21

• The Leading Economic Index rose 0.2 percent in March, while a downward revision to the prior month’s figure means the index declined in the three consecutive months through February.(7)
• Oil futures finished lower, pulling back after posting healthy gains over the past two sessions and reaching their highest levels of the year.(8)

Friday 04/22

• U.S. stocks edged up on Friday, gaining for a second week in a row, but the tech-heavy Nasdaq bucked the trend as bellwether tech stocks lagged. Alphabet Inc.GOOGL, -0.10% and Microsoft Corp. MSFT, -0.06% led the decliners in the wake of weaker-than-expected quarterly earnings. The S&P 500 SPX, +0.00% added less than a point to close at 2,091 while the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.12%rose 21 points, or 0.1%, to end at 18,003. However, the Nasdaq COMP, -0.80% slid 39 points, or 0.8%, to close at 4,906.(9)

Contributor: Felipe Vargas-Zúñiga

(1) Source: National Association of Realtors, FHLMC and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC
(2) Source: U.S. Department of Commerce and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC
(3) Source: MarketWatch
(4) Source: MarketWatch
(5) Source: MarketWatch
(6) Source: MarketWatch
(7) Source: The Conference Board, Federal Reserve System and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC
(8) Source: MarketWatch
(9) Source: MarketWatch

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