Marketbites: Payroll Data Reaffirms Economic Strength
Portfolio Manager Commentary:
The Dow dipped 0.18% for its second negative session in a row. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq rose 0.14% and 0.40%, respectively. These mixed results came after new numbers on the job market led investors to believe that higher rate hikes are more likely. Stronger-than-expected private payrolls numbers for February reaffirmed the strength of the economy. Powell reiterated his warning message to lawmakers that the central bank may raise interest rates higher than previously anticipated. However, he emphasized that no decision has been made yet regarding the March meeting.
“The global economy is more resilient than many realized, which will make inflation stickier and is extending central bankers’ terminal rate target. Inflation has come down but is nowhere near the Fed’s 2% target, so there is much work to be done given the stubborn strength of the economy and wage inflation,” says Main Street Research’s chief investment officer James Demmert.
BJ’s Wholesale and JD.com are set to report earnings today. Investors will be also looking at the jobless claims report, which is due at 8:30 a.m. ET. Federal Reserve Vice Chair for Supervision, Michael Barr, is also scheduled to speak on cryptocurrencies.
Chart of the Day:
Exports from China fell 6.8% in the first two months of 2023 from a year earlier, extending a string of year-over-year declines stretching back to October and complicating Beijing’s efforts to juice an economy still reeling from three years of stringent ‘zero Covid’ rules. For China, a softening export sector poses uncertainty for the broader economy.