Overcoming jitters about the Delta variant and the reintroduction of mask requirements, stocks climbed higher on strong employment data and a fresh batch of strong corporate earnings.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.78% while the Standard & Poor’s 500 advanced 0.94%. The Nasdaq Composite index gained 1.11% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, picked up 1.61%.1,2,3
Push and Pull
The crosscurrents of strong corporate profits and the rise in Delta variant infections led to a roller coaster week of price action, as markets alternated between daily gains and losses. By Thursday, however, investors appeared to grow more optimistic that the economic reopening was not under serious threat when back-to-back employment reports suggested that the economic recovery remained on track.
A favorable initial jobless claims report was enough to send the S&P 500 and Nasdaq to new all-time highs. Thanks to Friday’s stronger-than-expected employment report, the S&P 500 managed to add to its previous record close, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average set its own record high. The more tech-centric Nasdaq, however, slipped off its highs.4
Last week reinforced the idea of an improving labor market. After a disappointing ADP (Automated Data Processing) National Employment Report that showed a slowdown in private-sector hiring, with just 330,000 new jobs added, subsequent employment data were much more encouraging.5
Thursday’s report of a modest drop in initial jobless claims to 385,000 and a more substantial drop of 366,000 in continuing claims was followed by a solid employment report on Friday, which showed employers had added 943,000 new jobs in July—the biggest jump since August 2020. This hiring increase shaved the unemployment rate to 5.4%, down from June’s 5.9% rate.6,7
This Week: Key Economic Data
Monday: JOLTS (Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey).
Wednesday: Consumer Price Index.
Thursday: Jobless Claims.
Friday: Consumer Sentiment.
Source: Econoday, August 6, 2021
This Week: Companies Reporting Earnings
Monday: Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. (APD), Tyson Foods, Inc. (TSN).
Tuesday: Sysco Corporation (SYY), Coinbase Global, Inc. (COIN).
Wednesday: Nio, Inc. (NIO), eBay, Inc. (EBAY).
Thursday: The Walt Disney Company (DIS), Baidu, Inc. (BIDU), Doordash, Inc. (DASH), Airbnb, Inc. (ABNB).
Source: Zacks, August 6, 2021
“Do not merely practice your art, but force your way into its secrets; it deserves that, for only art and science can exalt man to divinity.”
– Ludwig van Beethoven
Give Back to Your Community By Working as a Tax Volunteer
If you're looking for a way to give back to your community and want to help people with low-to-moderate incomes, consider applying to volunteer with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or Tax Counseling for the Elderly programs. These programs offer free tax help to senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and those who speak limited English to understand their tax situations.
Here are some of the perks of being a VITA or TCE volunteer:
* This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest that you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.
Tip adapted from IRS.gov8
What to Look for on a Nutrition Label
Nutrition labels contain a lot of helpful information that can guide you in the right direction as you eat healthier. But do you know how to read one correctly? The first thing you will see on a nutrition label is the serving size. This is a guide to show you how many calories a single serving of food contains.
The next section is the nutrients. This section helps you determine the nutritional value of a food. Pay close attention to the saturated fat and added sugar. Lastly, you have the % Daily Value (DV). This is the percentage of each nutrient in a single serving in terms of the recommended amount.
Tip adapted from the American Heart Association9
What has exactly three feet, but not a single toe?
Last week’s riddle: A coin lies inside an otherwise empty bottle that has a cork inserted in its neck. How can you remove this coin without removing the cork or breaking the bottle? Answer: Push the cork into the bottle, then turn the bottle upside down to let the coin out.
Brown bear with salmon, Alaska.
Footnotes and Sources
2. The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2021
3. The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2021
4. CNBC, August 6, 2021
5. CNBC, August 4, 2021
6. The Wall Street Journal, August 5, 2021
7. The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2021
8. IRS.gov, September 19, 2020
9. Heart.org, 2021
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Weekly Market Insights: Jobs Strong, Earnings Strong
August 11, 2021