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The Market Wrap for May 17: Plenty of Anxiety on the Street

If there is one word that sums up the markets over the last few weeks it has to be uncertainty. Issues with earnings, slowing data and a dwindling global economy have placed traders on edge. This continued last week when President Trump tweeted about the lack of a deal with China on trade. This high anxiety spilled over into the new week. With choppy trading, investors continued to react both positively and negatively to various news points. Often with magnified swings.

Boosting these swings was the relatively poor data on the week – with several measures in consumer, manufacturing and housing coming in less than bullish. Earnings were also less than ideal. As the season has progressed, the last remaining bellwethers reporting over the most recent trading sessions have proposed a cautionary outlook. All of this continued to put traders on edge.

However, there was some good news this week. Reports have already begun to swirl that the U.S. and China may actually be closer to a deal than originally thought and that talks are expected to resume shortly. In this, traders found hope, which helped push stocks higher.

In the end, the week was a bumpy one and underscores the market’s new reality.

Be sure to check out our previous Wrap here, when a U.S./China deal was off the table.

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