Fed Talk Boosts Stocks – Weekly Update

March 25, 2024 | By Steven DiGregorio

Stocks posted their best week of the year, sparked by news that the dovish Fed decided to keep rates steady and signaled three rate cuts were still possible this year.

Stocks Bounce Back

As widely expected, the Fed left rates unchanged at the conclusion of its two-day meeting. But somewhat less expected, the Fed signaled its inclination to cut interest rates three times this year—each time by a quarter percentage point. That was a positive surprise for some, who worried that recent hot inflation reports would cause the Fed to reconsider its stance.1

Markets pushed higher Wednesday following the news, with all three averages closing at record highs. The rally continued through Thursday, boosted further by news that existing home sales rose 9.5 percent in February.2,3

The week’s rally was broad-based overall, with 10 of the 11 S&P 500 sectors posting gains (health care dropped slightly). At one point late in the week, nearly one in four S&P 500 stocks were trading at 52-week highs. That was the highest proportion in three years, which supports the idea that the rally was broadening out from mega-cap tech stocks.4

Turning Point

The Federal Open Market Committee’s decision marks a turning point as the Fed signaled that its target range of 5.25 to 5.50 percent has topped out. That target range, in place since late last year, is the highest level in 23 years.

“We believe that our policy rate is likely at its peak for this type of cycle,” said Fed Chair Powell at the post-meeting press conference. He added that if the economy keeps on its current course, that the FOMC would likely “begin dialing back policy restraint at some point this year.” If the FOMC votes to ease it at its June meeting, it would be the first cut in four years.4,5

This Week: Key Economic Data

Monday: New Home Sales.
Tuesday: Durable Goods Orders. Case-Shiller Home Price Index.
Wednesday: EIA Petroleum Status Report. Survey of Business Uncertainty.
Thursday: Gross Domestic Product. Jobless Claims. Consumer Sentiment. Pending Home Sales.
Friday: Personal Income and Outlays. International Trade in Goods. Retail Inventories.

Source: Investors Business Daily – Econoday economic calendar; March 18, 2024
The Econoday economic calendar lists upcoming U.S. economic data releases (including key economic indicators), Federal Reserve policy meetings, and speaking engagements of Federal Reserve officials. The content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The forecasts or forward-looking statements are based on assumptions and may not materialize. The forecasts also are subject to revision.

This Week: Companies Reporting Earnings

Tuesday: McCormick & Company, Incorporated (MKC, MKC.V), Dave & Buster’s Entertainment, Inc. (PLAY)
Wednesday: Paychex, Inc. (PAYX), Carnival Corporation (CCL, CUK), Cintas Corporation (CTAS)
Thursday: Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (WBA)

Source: Zacks, March 19, 2024
Companies mentioned are for informational purposes only. It should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of the securities. Investing involves risks, and investment decisions should be based on your own goals, time horizon, and tolerance for risk. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost. Companies may reschedule when they report earnings without notice.

Box upload

Source: YCharts.com, March 23, 2024. Weekly performance is measured from Monday, March 18, to Friday, March 22.
ROC 5 = the rate of change in the index for the previous 5 trading days.
TR = total return for the index, which includes any dividends as well as any other cash distributions during the period.
Treasury note yield is expressed in basis points.

Footnotes and Sources

1. The Wall Street Journal, March 22, 2024
2. CNBC.com, March 20, 2024
3. Sectorspdrs.com, March 22, 2024
4. MarketWatch.com, March 22, 2024
5. The Wall Street Journal, March 21, 2024


Share the Wealth of Knowledge!
Please share this market update with family, friends, or colleagues. 
If you would like us to add them to our list, 
simply click on the “Forward email” link below. We love being introduced!


If you would like to opt-out of future emails, please reply to this email with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

The content of this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as an offer of investment advice, investment strategy or to buy, transfer or sell any security or other investment vehicle. Information contained herein has been obtained from sources deemed reliable but Spire Wealth Management LLC, Spire Securities LLC and their affiliates, including Compass Asset Management Group LLC, do not guarantee its accuracy. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Spire Wealth Management LLC, Spire Securities LLC or its affiliates.

Spire Wealth Management LLC is a federally Registered Investment Advisor. Securities offered through an affiliate, Spire Securities LLC. Member FINRA/SIPC

By accessing any links contained in this article you will be leaving Spire Wealth Management LLC & its affiliates and Compass Asset Management Group LLC websites and entering a website hosted by another party. Although Spire Wealth Management LLC & its affiliates and Compass Asset Management Group LLC have approved these as reliable partner sites, please be advised that you will no longer be subject to, or under the protection of, the privacy and security policies of Spire Wealth Management LLC & its affiliates Compass Asset Management Group LLC websites. The other parties are solely responsible for the content of their websites. We encourage you to read and evaluate the privacy and security policies on the sites you are entering, which may be different than those of Spire Wealth Management LLC & its affiliates Compass Asset Management Group LLC.

Diversification does not guarantee profit nor is it guaranteed to protect assets.

International investing involves special risks such as currency fluctuation and political instability and may not be suitable for all investors.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted average of 30 significant stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ. The DJIA was invented by Charles Dow back in 1896.

The Nasdaq Composite is an index of the common stocks and similar securities listed on the NASDAQ stock market and is considered a broad indicator of the performance of stocks of technology companies and growth companies.

The MSCI EAFE Index was created by Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) that serves as a benchmark of the performance in major international equity markets as represented by 21 major MSCI indices from Europe, Australia, and Southeast Asia.

The 10-year Treasury Note represents debt owed by the United States Treasury to the public. Since the U.S. Government is seen as a risk-free borrower, investors use the 10-year Treasury Note as a benchmark for the long-term bond market.

Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance.

Past performance does not guarantee future results.

You cannot invest directly in an index.

Consult your financial professional before making any investment decision.

Fixed income investments are subject to various risks including changes in interest rates, credit quality, inflation risk, market valuations, prepayments, corporate events, tax ramifications and other factors.

By clicking on these links, you will leave our server, as the links are located on another server. We have not independently verified the information available through this link. The link is provided to you as a matter of interest. Please click on the links below to leave.

Tags: DJIA, Fed, FOMC, NASDAQ, rate cuts, S&P 500

Steve Digregorio Headshot
STEVEN M DIGREGORIO is President of Compass Asset Management Group, LLC and an Investment Advisor Representative with Spire Wealth Management, LLC.
Connect with him on LinkedIn.
Back to Results | |