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Bob Carey
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  US Stock Markets Ended Dec. 3, 2021
Posted Under: Weekly Market Commentary
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The S&P 500 Index recorded its second consecutive weekly loss as it retraced 1.18%. The index finished the month of November down 0.83% after rising to record highs early in the month and falling in the last week to its final level. Equity markets were spooked by the announcement of a new Covid-19 variant of concern, Omicron, which originated in South Africa but has been identified in several US states already. The VIX volatility index spiked over 100% from an October low to the highest level seen since January of this year. The Solative Airlines, Hotels, and Cruise Lines Index has fallen 8.7% since Thanksgiving as economically sensitive stocks sold off and Covid winners rebounded on the news. Equity markets also responded negatively to Fed Chair Jay Powell's comments on Tuesday that current inflation may not be as "transitory" as previously expected, although he indicated that the Fed still plans to move forward on the easing of the accommodative monetary policy that has propped up asset values throughout the Covid crisis. The best performing sectors in the S&P 500 during the past week were Utilities and Real Estate while Communications Services and Consumer Discretionary performed the worst. The top S&P 500 performer, Vertex Pharmaceuticals jumped 11.4% during the week as the company released positive results from its VX-147 drug which has the potential to cure type 1 diabetes while Etsy Inc. was the worst performer, returning -20.6%. Nonfarm payrolls disappointed in November as the US economy added fewer jobs but the unemployment rate decreased due to adults rejoining the work force. The market is anticipating a blowout November CPI inflation rate to be announced in the week ahead. The median estimate of 6.7% growth would be the highest since 1982. US investors will continue to monitor exposure to China as pressure from Chinese regulators led Didi Global Inc. to make the decision to delist from the NYSE in favor of a Hong Kong listing. In the week ahead we expect to see earnings results from software companies Oracle, Inc. and MongoDB, Inc. as well as meme-stock favorites GameStop Corporation and ChargePoint Holdings, Inc.
Posted on Monday, December 6, 2021 @ 8:32 AM • Post Link Share: 
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These posts were prepared by First Trust Advisors L.P., and reflect the current opinion of the authors. They are based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security.
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