United States stocks rally after strong jobs data, dovish Fed comments
08 January, 2019, 00:20 | Author: Joshua Bennett
The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Friday jumped to a fresh peak as a trio of bankers, headlined by current Chairman Jerome Powell, underscored the health of the US economy but also expressed an attentiveness to a market that has grown fragile amid a spate of interest-rate increases.
About 45 minutes later, Powell, in a televised panel discussion at an American Economic Association conference in Atlanta, was asked whether he's heard from the White House on interest-rate policy and a proposed meeting with Trump. Powell said he has no meeting scheduled with Trump. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication. He did not address Fed forecasts from December that sketched out two more rate rises this year, but, combined with the messages of Fed presidents who in recent days downplayed that tightening plan, he delivered the sort of temperate message investors had hoped to hear.
"The market's been grappling with growth, the Fed and China", said Tony Roth, chief investment officer at Wilmington Trust in Wilmington, Delaware.
Stocks opened the day higher after the Labor Department reported that nonfarm payrolls in the United States increased in December by 312,000, well above consensus estimates of 177,000 jobs created.
"Despite this dovish tone, we are skeptical", Schenker said in a note.
The question about Powell's possible departure arose after Trump expressed disagreement with the Federal Reserve's monetary policy to increase interest rates and the chairman's work overall. This response no doubt helped the market to recover on Friday.
"We will be patient as we watch to see how the economy evolves", he said. Wages and labour force participation both rose, signalling sustained economic strength.
Treasury yields rose on Friday after the US employment report for December came in more robust than expected, and on the back of USA equities, which hit session highs as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell struck a dovish tone in a roundtable interview.
The world's biggest economy expanded well above potential last year and, along with US consumers, is expected to remain strong through this year.
Building on a comment by Yellen that the Fed in the past has often killed expansions by jacking up rates to fight too-high inflation, Bernanke said he didn't see anyone "hiding behind the curtain" waiting to slay the current upturn, including the central bank. A third Fed president, Thomas Barkin of Richmond, said he is hearing more concerns about economic risks and trade. "However, we look for the Fed to wait until May 1 to hike rates again". He also said that the central bank would be willing to "adjust" policy if it disrupted the market or created adverse financial conditions, running against the central bank's statutory goals.
"My interpretation is that the markets did see and put emphasis on the downside risks to growth and some of the softening data coming out of China and some of the European countries".
Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish will travel to China for talks, China's commerce ministry and USTR said. American envoys are due in Beijing for talks Monday in a tariff battle over Chinese technology ambitions.
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