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Optimism is back on the table for traders this week. Despite the shortened trading week, investors continued to bid up stocks on rising expectations for better economic growth. Rhetoric from the Trump administration was light this week and traders were focused on the growth initiatives from the President and his cabinet. This resulted in higher equity prices throughout the week.
Also helping was light data. This week saw only a few metrics released and those that were – such as measures of housing market strength – came in better than estimated. However, there were a few speed bumps related to manufacturing numbers.
As for earnings, the flood of reporting has turned into a trickle. The shortened week saw only a few bellwethers report their profits. While the numbers have been mixed this season, the majority of firms have been reporting better-than-expected profits.
Finally, Janet Yellen and the Fed gave investors reason to cheer as they signaled to be on course to normalize interest policies.
In the end, the week’s positives outweighed the negatives and stocks continued their march higher.