Rising bond yields and uncertainty over whether this was the close of the Fed’s rate-hike cycle dragged markets lower last week despite solid corporate earnings results.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank 1.61%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 fell 2.39%. The Nasdaq Composite index, which has led for much of the year, slumped 3.16%. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, retreated 1.67%.1,2,3
Rising Yields Sink Stocks
Stocks rallied to start the week on earnings optimism before losing momentum over rising bond yields. Yields rose after traders speculated that strong economic data might persuade the Fed to raise rates. By mid-week, stocks turned lower as the 10-year Treasury yield moved above 4.9% for the first time since 2007, while mortgage rates hit 8%–the highest level since mid-2000.4
Stocks were under pressure Thursday as the 10-year Treasury yield moved closer to 5% and in response to comments from Fed Chair Powell that inflation remained too high. With the 10-year Treasury yield crossing above the 5% mark on Friday–and ahead of a weekend of uncertainty in the Middle East–stocks weakened further, ending a down week on a sour note.
Economic Strength, Housing Weakness
The economy continued to evidence surprising strength according to data released last week. Despite worries of a struggling consumer, consumers increased their spending as retail sales rose 0.7% in September–well above the forecast of a 0.3% rise, while industrial output jumped 0.3%, exceeding the forecast of a 0.1% gain.5
There were also updates on the state of housing. Housing starts rebounded 7.0% from August, though permits (an indicator of future housing starts) declined 4.4% month-over-month. Existing home sales were weak, falling 2.0% from August and 15.4% from a year ago. Existing home sales are on track to record their slowest year since 2011.6,7
This Week: Key Economic Data
Tuesday: Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI).
Wednesday: New Home Sales.
Thursday: Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Durable Goods Orders. Jobless Claims.
Friday: Personal Income and Outlays. Consumer Sentiment.
Source: Econoday, October 20, 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: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT), General Electric Company (GE), Verizon Communications, Inc. (VZ), Alphabet, Inc. (GOOGL), General Motors Company (GM), The CocaCola Company (KO), 3M Company (MMM), Texas Instruments, Inc. (TXN), HCA Healthcare, Inc. (HCA), NextEra Energy, Inc. (NEE), Kimberly-Clark Corporation (KMB), The Sherwin-Williams Company (SHW), Danaher Corporation (DHR), PulteGroup, Inc. (PHM)
Wednesday: The Boeing Company (BA), International Business Machines Corporation (IBM), ServiceNow, Inc. (NOW), Thermo Fisher Scientific, Inc. (TMO), General Dynamics Corporation (GD), O’Reilly Automotive, Inc. (ORLY), T-Mobile US, Inc. (TMUS)
Thursday: Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN), Intel Corporation (INTC), Ford Motor Company (F), Mastercard, Inc. (MA), Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK), Northrop Grumman Corporation (NOC), United Parcel Service, Inc. (UPS), Comcast Corporation (CMCSA), Honeywell International, Inc. (HON)
Friday: AbbVie, Inc. (ABBV), Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM), Chevron Corporation (CVX), Colgate-Palmolive Company (CL)
Source: Zacks, October 20, 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.
Gig Economy Tax Tips
There are some essential tips to remember if you work as a gig worker:
All income is taxable, regardless of whether you receive information returns, including full-time and part-time work and those paid in cash.
As a gig worker, your classification is as an employee or an independent contractor; this can depend on where you live, even for the same services.
Lastly, it's important to remember to pay the correct taxes on this income throughout the year to manage owing additional taxes when you file. Because gig employees don't have an employer withholding taxes from their paychecks, they can either submit a new W-4 and have their employer withhold more from their pay (if they have another job as an employee) or make quarterly estimated tax payments throughout the year.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.
Boost Your Productivity With These Tips
Take regular breaks. It seems counterintuitive, but most people are more productive when they take frequent breaks.
Do the challenging tasks first. Mark Twain famously said to "eat the frog first thing in the morning," meaning you should tackle your most difficult task immediately.
Make two to-do lists: one with your weekly goals and objectives and one with your daily tasks.
Divide large projects into manageable steps. Make the things on your to-do list specific so you can continue to cross things out and make progress.9
Salted Caramel Apple Pie Bars
Yield: 12-16 bars
PREP TIME: 25 mins | COOK TIME: 45 mins | TOTAL TIME: 3 hours 20 mins
Baking apple pie as bars is so much easier!
- 1/2 cup (8 Tbsp; 113g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)
- 2 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced (1/4 inch thick)*
- 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup (43g) old-fashioned whole rolled oats
- 1/3 cup (70g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup (31g) all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)
- 1/4 cup (4 Tbsp; 56g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- caramel sauce
- Preheat the oven to 300°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper leaving enough overhang on all sides. Set aside.
- Make the crust: Stir the melted butter, granulated sugar, vanilla, and salt together in a medium bowl. Add the flour and stir until everything is combined. Press the mixture evenly into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes and then remove from the oven. (As the crust bakes, you can prepare the filling and streusel.)
- Make the apple filling: Combine the sliced apples, flour, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a large bowl until all of the apples are evenly coated. Set aside
- Make the streusel: Whisk the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour together in a medium bowl. Cut in the chilled butter with a pastry blender or two forks (or even with your hands) until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.
- Turn the oven up to 350°F (177°C). Evenly layer the apples on top of the warm crust. It will look like there are too many apple slices, so layer them tightly and press them down to fit. Sprinkle the apple layer with streusel and bake for 30–35 minutes or until the streusel is golden brown.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 20 minutes at room temperature, then chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours (or overnight). Lift the foil or parchment out of the pan using the overhang on the sides and cut into bars. Cut them into 16 smaller bars, but you can cut them into 12 larger bars. Once cut, drizzle some salted caramel sauce on top of each. These apple pie bars can be enjoyed warm, at room temperature, or even cold.
Footnotes and Sources
1. The Wall Street Journal, October 20, 2023
2. The Wall Street Journal, October 20, 2023
3. The Wall Street Journal, October 20, 2023
4. CNBC, October 17, 2023
5. CNBC, October 17, 2023
6. CNN, October 18, 2023
7. The Wall Street Journal, October 19, 2023
8. IRS.gov, January 31, 2023
9. Formstack, July 19, 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.