News of a COVID-19 vaccine ignited a rally in economically sensitive stocks and a broad retreat in technology companies last week, though enthusiasm was tempered by reports of rising new infections and fresh lockdowns.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 4.08%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 rose 2.16%. The Nasdaq Composite index fell 0.55% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, jumped 4.01%.1,2,3
Reports of an effective COVID-19 vaccine sent stocks soaring on Monday as the end to economic uncertainty appeared to be in sight. Stocks that had been pummeled by economic lockdowns surged on the news, while the stay-at-home stocks suffered steep declines. Bond yields and oil prices both moved higher on expectations of increased economic activity.
Market enthusiasm evaporated in the days that followed, however, as higher COVID-19 infections, new lockdowns, and low expectations for a new fiscal stimulus package dampened the optimism brought on by the pending vaccine.
Stocks closed the week on a higher note, with cyclical stocks adding to their gains and technology companies shaving part of their losses.
Clouds Over Chinese Capitalism?
The market was caught by surprise last week when Chinese regulatory authorities issued draft guidelines to address concerns over abusive monopolistic practices. Shares in some of the biggest Chinese technology companies dropped on the news. This follows the prior week’s suspension of a listing of a large initial public offering for one of the country’s leading fintech companies.
It’s difficult to say whether Chinese regulators are acting on concerns that western nations have with the dominance of Big Tech companies, or if they are attempting to rein in the power and influence of privately owned corporations. An answer may not be clear anytime soon, but investors will be watching.
This Week: Key Economic Data
Tuesday: Retail Sales.
Wednesday: Housing Starts.
Thursday: Existing Home Sales, Jobless Claims, Index of Leading Economic Indicators.
Source: Econoday, November 13, 2020
This Week: Companies Reporting Earnings
Monday: Palo Alto Networks (PANW), Tyson Foods, Inc. (TSN), JD.com, Inc. (JD)
Tuesday: Walmart (WMT), The Home Depot (HD)
Wednesday: Nvidia Corp. (NVDA), Target Corp. (TGT), Lowe’s Companies (LOW), The TJX Companies (TJX)
Thursday: Workday, Inc. (WDAY), Ross Stores (ROST), Intuit (INTU), Netease, Inc. (NTES)
Source: Zacks, November 13, 2020
“The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.”
– Elizabeth Foley
Tax Pros Should Protect Their EFIN
Every tax professional has their own electronic filing identification number, or EFIN. To help maintain security, tax pros can verify the number of returns submitted using their EFIN and look out for suspicious activity. Tax pros can check this information using the IRS e-Services. Once they create an account, they can see the number of returns the IRS received and match this number to their records.
* 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 IRS4
Friendships May Benefit Your Health in Many Ways
Making friends is one of the very first things we do as children and that need for connection only gets more important as we age.
Friendships may benefit our health in a number of ways. First off, having friends may decrease stress levels, which impact both our mental and physical health. Laughing with friends is one of the best forms of medicine! Friendships may also help keep our minds sharp. You’re engaging more with others and feel less isolated and alone. Lastly, friends are a great support system and can help us through tough times.
So grab a friend and celebrate the holiday season!
Tip adapted from Live Science5
A rooster sits atop a farmhouse. Its roof is unequally pitched. One half slopes down at an angle of 60º, and the other half at 70º. If the rooster lays an egg right on the peak of the roof, on which side is the egg more likely to fall?
Orca pod near the Great Barrier Islands, New Zealand.
Footnotes and Sources
1. The Wall Street Journal, November 13, 2020
2. The Wall Street Journal, November 13, 2020
3. The Wall Street Journal, November 13, 2020
4. IRS.gov, March 5, 2020
5. Livescience.com, November 13, 2020
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Weekly Market Insights: Vaccine Triggers Rally
November 24, 2020