US Stocks Ended Nov. 4, 2016
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Last week the S&P 500 Index continued the previous week's decline returning -1.89%. The S&P 500 Index has returned 3.88% YTD 2016, but has declined since its August 15 closing high returning -4.38%. Monday opened mixed and closed down 1 basis point with utilities and real estate showing strength throughout the day and weakness shown by energy and health care. With weakness in foreign markets and volatility increasing in the equity markets, the S&P 500 Index showed its worst day of the week on Tuesday returning -0.68%. The downtrend continued Wednesday returning -0.64% as investors' contemplated many uncertainties such as the presidential election. Expectations of a December rate hike increased after the Federal Open Market Committee left rates unchanged as anticipated. Equity markets opened flat on Thursday, but began to slide a few hours into the trading day. The index returned -0.41% as investors continued to show their caution ahead of the jobs report and the upcoming election. US initial jobless claims of 265K were higher than the consensus estimate of 256K and higher than the previous week's 258K. Stocks advanced early through mid-day, but trended down the remainder of the trading day for a loss on Friday as the S&P 500 Index returned -0.16% marking the ninth straight day of losses Crude oil closed the week at $44.07 a barrel, declining 9.51% from the previous week's close. All eleven economic sectors had negative performance for the week. The materials sector was the best performing sector with a -0.65% return. The utilities and industrials sectors followed with -1.08% and -1.10% returns, respectively. The information technology sector's -2.74% return was the worst performance of all the sectors and was followed by telecommunication services and energy which returned -2.29% and -2.16%, respectively. FMC Corp, a diversified research company in the chemical industry, turned in the best performance in the S&P 500 Index with an 11.26% gain. The stock jumped 10.50% Thursday on earnings news released Wednesday after the close. The next two best performers were Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. and NRG Energy Inc. with returns of 7.64% and 7.09%, respectively.
Posted on Monday, November 7, 2016 @ 8:59 AM

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.