Will Jobs Week Be Sweeps Week?

October 30, 2018

It will likely be a very busy end of the year and this current period will significantly contribute to that forecast. Last week we had the first reading of economic growth for the third quarter and minutes released from the last meeting of the Federal Reserve Board’s Open Market Committee. Those minutes showed that the Fed is committed to their “gradual” rate increases, despite pressure from the Administration. This week we have a jobs report which will be the first reading of fourth quarter data and next week we have a little event called the “mid-term” elections in which the balance of power within Congress is up for grabs.

Jobs Queens NYIt is no wonder that the stock market has been extremely volatile in the past couple of weeks. Rising interest rates have been driving stocks downward, while excellent corporate earnings reports have been providing quite a lift. Corporate profits are up this year, not surprising with the economy strong. We seem to be experiencing a tug of war–one that has actually kept the markets’ overall progress fairly limited this year.

We believe that we will know a lot about where the economy stands by the end of the fourth quarter. Some are predicting a slowdown in 2019, as the economy starts to run out of steam after a long run. Higher interest rates and the waning effects of tax reform are cited to buttress that position. On the other hand, additional prognosticators are predicting that the economy still has the steam to grow at a good pace for another few years. It will be interesting to see how a busy fourth quarter may affect these forecasts.

Source: Origination Pro

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