Basis Points – August 21st

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Markets Retreat as Fed May Not Be Done Raising Rates

After another week of strong economic data, investors seemed to accept that the Fed may not be done lifting interest rates after all — and that Wall Street might have started celebrating the end of the rate-hike cycle too soon. Each of the benchmark indexes listed here dropped more than 2% by the end of the week, as did crude oil prices. Gold prices also fell, while the dollar advanced. Yields on 10-year Treasuries continued their upward march, reaching 15-year highs.


Retail Sales Increase

Retail sales surged 0.7% in July from the previous month — the fastest pace since January — and have increased 3.2% since July 2022. Retail trade sales advanced 0.6% from June and 2.0% from July 2022. Non-store (online) retail sales increased 1.9% from June and 10.3% from July 2022, while sales at food services and drinking places were up 1.4% from June and 11.9% higher than last year.


Fed’s Jackson Hole Economic Symposium This Week

The Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole Economic Symposium is an annual event that brings together central bankers, economists and other policymakers from around the world to discuss economic issues. This year’s symposium, which is being held Aug. 24-26, is focused on the topic of “Structural Shifts in the Global Economy.” The keynote speech will be delivered by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on the morning of Friday, Aug. 25. His speech will be closely followed by markets searching for clues about inflation and monetary policy.

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