Broker Check


| January 02, 2024

The Week On Wall Street
Stocks posted a slight gain last week amid a shortage of news and light holiday trading. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.76%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 added 0.49%. The Nasdaq Composite index advanced 0.32% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, increased 1.13%.
Stocks Gain to End Year
The stock market gains in the final trading days of 2023 capped an exceptional year of performance. The last-week rally also mirrored the historical tendency of stocks to rise at this time of year, a propensity known as the “Santa Claus rally.” The Santa Claus rally covers the final five trading days of the calendar year and the first two days of trading in January. The average return of the S&P 500 during this Santa Claus rally is 1.3% during the past 73 years. Remember that past performance does not guarantee future results, and individuals cannot invest directly in an index. The 2023 week’s gains, led by smaller-capitalization stocks and a handful of industry sectors, were partially erased on Friday as light volume and some profit-taking pressured stocks.
Jobless Claims Rise
Initial jobless claims increased by 12,000 to 218,000, which exceeded economists’ forecasts. The four-week moving average, which better illustrates jobless claim trends, was little changed, coming in at 212,000; this was the lowest number since late October.  Continuing jobless claims, which measures the number of individuals collecting unemployment benefits, was flat from the previous week at 1.88 million.6
This Week: Key Economic Data
Wednesday:  Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Manufacturing Index.
Thursday: Automated Data Processing (ADP) Employment Report. Jobless Claims. 
Friday: Employment Situation.
This Week: Notable Companies Reporting Earnings
Thursday: Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (WBA), Lamb Weston (LW), Conagra Brands (CAG)
Friday: Constellation Brands, Inc. (STZ)
Final Thoughts
The markets ended 2023 with a bang.  As mentioned in a prior email, most of the pundits were terribly wrong about where we would end 2023.  So, keep that in mind as they give you their forecasts for 2024.  I think the first week of the year tends to tell us the mood of the market, so we will be paying attention this week.  We’ll have our first quarter update out soon with more robust thoughts on the year ahead.  
We wish you and your families a happy, healthy and prosperous year ahead!