Marketbites: Art Market Hits a Wall
Portfolio Manager Commentary:
All three major averages rose for the fourth consecutive day Thursday after another key inflation reading came in lighter than expected. This came after the S&P 500 closed at its highest level in over a year. Cybersecurity stock Palo Alto Networks jumped 2.7%. Meanwhile, shares of MGM Resorts and Alphabet rose 4.1% and 4.7%, respectively.
June’s producer price index report rose less than anticipated, building upon optimism from Wednesday’s consumer price index data. The PPI, which measures what wholesalers pay for goods, rose 0.1% in June. Economists polled by Dow Jones had expected an increase of 0.2%. Core PPI, which strips out volatile food and energy prices, climbed 0.1% which was also lower than expectations.
“The PPI confirmed the cooling inflation shown in yesterday’s CPI, but the lower-than-expected weekly jobless claims number was a reminder of continued labor market tightness,” said Mike Loewengart, head of model portfolio construction at Morgan Stanley Global Investment Office.
“For now, the stage appears to be set: The Fed is still on track to raise interest rates in a couple of weeks, and investors will shift their focus to corporate balance sheets as earnings season kicks into gear,” Loewengart continued.
Chart of the Day:
The blistering art market is cooling off. For years, the world’s chief auction houses seemed impervious to volatile stock-market swings, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and historic inflation. Even amid the pandemic, Christie’s and Sotheby’s quickly pivoted online and art values kept soaring. Now, the good fortunes are slowing.
Sales at Christie’s and Sotheby’s slowed dramatically this spring as seasoned collectors chose not to ply their art troves into an uncertain economy. “We’re in a changing market,” said Guillaume Cerutti, Christie’s chief executive, calling it solid but “less impressive.” Cerutti blamed a supply shortage for the drop in its overall sales during the first half of the year, which fell 23% to $3.2 billion from a year ago.
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