Basis Points – May 2, 2024

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Stocks Closed Higher Last Week

Stocks closed last week higher, driven up by tech and communication shares. Each of the major benchmark indexes climbed higher, led by the Nasdaq, which rose more than 4.0%. With nearly 50.0% of S&P 500 companies reporting first-quarter earnings, 77.0% reported positive earnings per share, and 60.0% reported positive revenue, according to the latest information from FactSet. Each of the market sectors closed last week ahead, with consumer staples and information technology leading the way. Ten-year Treasury yields rose 5.0 basis points. The dollar was relatively flat. Crude oil prices gained 0.5%, while gold prices fell 2.2%.

GDP Growth Slowed in the First Quarter

Gross domestic product increased 1.6% in the first quarter of 2024, according to the advance estimate, which is somewhat based on incomplete source data. Compared to the fourth quarter, the decline in GDP in the first quarter primarily reflected decelerations in consumer spending, exports, state and local government spending, and a downturn in federal government spending. These movements were partly offset by an acceleration in residential fixed investment. Imports, which are a negative in the calculation of GDP, accelerated.

Eye on the Week Ahead

The Federal Open Market Committee meets this week. It is unlikely that interest rates will be lowered following this meeting. However, it will be interesting to see if the Committee changes its projections for interest rate reductions going forward. Following their last meeting, the Fed projected three interest rate reductions during 2024. Also out this week is the jobs data for April. Over 300,000 new jobs were added in March as the labor sector continued to show strength.


The information contained herein represents the views of Westwood Wealth Management at a specific point in time and is based on information believed to be reliable. No representation or warranty is made concerning the accuracy or completeness of any data compiled herein. Any statements non-factual in nature constitute only current opinion, which is subject to change. Any statements concerning financial market trends are based on current market conditions, which will fluctuate. Past performance is not indicative of future results. All information provided herein is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be, and should not be interpreted as, an offer, solicitation, or recommendation to buy or sell or otherwise invest in any of the securities/sectors/countries that may be mentioned.