September Stocks Open In Positive Territory

September Stocks Open In Positive Territory

September 04, 2023

Falling bond yields–spurred by weak economic data–helped lift stocks to weekly gains.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 1.43%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 2.50%. The Nasdaq Composite index increased 3.25% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, picked up 2.71%.1,2,3

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Stocks Rise on Slowing Economy

Investor sentiment turned positive last week as signs of economic softness were interpreted as reason for the Fed to hold off on further rate hikes. A downward revision of Q2 economic growth and fresh signs of a cooling labor market reversed the recent rise in bond yield. They helped trigger a stock bounceback following Fed Chair Powell’s speech at Jackson Hole the previous Friday.

It wasn’t all about bad news being viewed as good news, though. A series of solid earnings reports, an announcement by one mega-cap tech name introducing pricing for its AI tools, and fresh inflation data–in-line with market expectations–further boosted enthusiasm for stocks.

Signs of Labor Cooling

Despite historic monetary tightening, the labor market has exhibited remarkable resilience, but last week’s employment data showed a cooling trend.

Job openings declined to their lowest level since March 2021, though they remained above pre-pandemic levels. Meanwhile, a survey of private sector hiring showed a slowdown in hiring, with employers adding 177,000 jobs in August–below the 371,000 added in July and short of economists’ forecast of 200,000.4,5

Finally, the government’s monthly employment report showed the number of nonfarm payroll gains continued to decelerate in August, while June and July estimates were revised lower by 110,000.6

This Week: Key Economic Data

Tuesday: Factory Orders.

Wednesday: Institute for Supply Management (ISM) Services Index.

Thursday: Jobless Claims.

Friday: Consumer Credit.

Source: Econoday, September 1, 2023
The Econoday economic calendar lists upcoming U.S. economic data releases (including key economic indicators), Federal Reserve policy meetings, and speaking engagements of Federal Reserve officials. The content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The forecasts or forward-looking statements are based on assumptions and may not materialize. The forecasts also are subject to revision.

This Week: Companies Reporting Earnings

Tuesday: Zscaler, Inc. (ZS)

Thursday: DocuSign (DOCU)

Friday:  The Kroger Co. (KR)

Source: Zacks, September 1, 2023
Companies mentioned are for informational purposes only. It should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of the securities. Investing involves risks, and investment decisions should be based on your own goals, time horizon, and tolerance for risk. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost. Companies may reschedule when they report earnings without notice.

Summer Vacation Is Over, Could September Be Hotter Than August?

I know I sound like a broken record, but as long as the HCM-BuyLine® is positive, which it is, all pullbacks should be considered buyable. August is historically a lousy month for stocks. A lot of people are usually on vacation, and several other factors typically affect the markets in August. That said, September tends to...[READ MORE]7

This communication is issued by Howard Capital Management, Inc. It is for informational purposes and is not an official confirmation of terms. It is not guaranteed as to accuracy, nor is it a complete statement of the financial products or markets referred to. Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice. 

Protect Your Tax Data

Protecting your data is very important in today's digital age. The Internal Revenue Service shared guidelines tax pros should follow to protect taxpayer data. But these are also great guidelines for individuals.

Anti-virus software: This software scans computer files for malicious software, or malware, on the device. Anti-virus vendors find new issues and update malware daily. Always install the latest updates of the software on your computer.

Two-factor authentication: Two-factor authentication adds an extra layer of protection beyond just a password. Not only do you enter your username and password, but you also enter a security code sent to another device for extra protection.

Drive encryption: Drive encryption transforms sensitive data into unreadable code that cannot be deciphered easily by unauthorized people, so only the authorized person can access the data.8

*This information is not intended to substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.

Tips for Eating Less Salt

Sodium isn’t completely bad for our bodies, but too much can increase blood pressure and cause stress on the heart and blood vessels. Because of this, it’s essential to monitor your sodium intake and be aware of how much sodium is in your foods.

If you want to tackle cutting back on sodium, choose unprocessed or minimally processed foods. Prepared foods are generally high in added sodium compared to fresh options. Cut back on sources of high sodium, such as pepperoni pizza, white bread, processed cheese, deli meat, hot dogs, and other red meat and processed foods. Instead, eat more fruits, veggies, and whole grains, all lower in sodium.9

Cream Cheese Zucchini Muffins

Servings: 12

PREP TIME: 20 mins | COOK TIME: 20 mins | TOTAL TIME: 40 mins

You'll want to add cream cheese to all of your muffins after trying these.

Cream Cheese Filling:  

  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Zucchini Muffins:

  • 1 1/2 cups (180g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup (71g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup (about 180g) grated zucchini, packed
  • 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar, for sprinkling, optional


  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a standard muffin pan with muffin liners.
  2. Make the cream cheese filling: In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth and creamy, similar in thickness to peanut butter.
  3. Combine the dry ingredients: In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, ginger, and nutmeg.
  4. Combine the wet ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the melted butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar until combined. Add the egg and whisk until it is fully incorporated. Stir in the grated zucchini until it is evenly distributed.
  5. Combine the wet and dry ingredients: Add the flour mixture to the zucchini mixture. Stir with a rubber spatula just until combined and no streaks of dry flour remain. The batter may seem slightly thicker than most muffin batters, but the zucchini will add a lot of moisture in the oven.
  6. Divide the batter: Use a cookie scoop or a couple of spoons to scoop a rounded tablespoon of batter into each muffin cup. Scoop a tablespoon of the cream cheese filling onto the batter. Divide the remaining muffin batter evenly between each muffin cup. You can use a spoon or a butter knife to ensure the batter completely encases the cream cheese filling or leave it be for more of a swirled layer. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of turbinado sugar on the top of each muffin, if using.
  7. Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425°F, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and continue baking for about 15 minutes longer. When they’re fully baked, the tops of the muffins will be matte and the edges will have started to brown.
  8. Cool the muffins and serve: Allow the muffins to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool for at least 10 minutes more. Serve warm or at room temperature.Store cooled leftover muffins in an airtight container on the counter for up to 2 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.


Footnotes and Sources

1. The Wall Street Journal, August 25, 2023

2. The Wall Street Journal, August 25, 2023

3. The Wall Street Journal, August 25, 2023

4. The Wall Street Journal, August 29, 2023.

5. CNBC, August 30, 2023.

6. The Wall Street Journal, September 1, 2023.

7., August 31, 2023 

8., 2023

9. Harvard Medical School, April 24, 2023

Investing involves risks, and investment decisions should be based on your own goals, time horizon, and tolerance for risk. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost.

The forecasts or forward-looking statements are based on assumptions, may not materialize, and are subject to revision without notice.

This content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The information in this material is not intended as tax or legal advice. Please consult legal or tax professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation. This material was developed and produced by FMG Suite to provide information on a topic that may be of interest. FMG is not affiliated with the named representative, financial professional, Registered Investment Advisor, Broker-Dealer, nor state- or SEC-registered investment advisory firm. The opinions expressed and material provided are for general information, and they should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security.

Copyright 2023 FMG Suite.

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