After weeks of volatility and feeling the heat from trade issues, slowing growth and lessening economic data, investors received a gift this week from the Federal Reserve. As expected, the central bank decided to leave benchmark interest rates alone at 2.5%. While the move was widely expected given the Fed’s new patient stance, the infusion of cheap money into the system was a welcome sign. Moreover, analysts now postulate that the Fed will be willing to cut rates by its next meeting.
The good news from the Fed was met with some “meh” from the housing sector. A variety of metrics gauging the sector’s health came in below expectations. Likewise, several smaller measures of regional manufacturing health also showed declines over the month. But with the Fed looking to cut rates, bad news is actually good.
And while the so-called earnings season is over, a few more bellwethers have been reporting lately. Several wins here also helped boost stocks over the week.
Adding in the lack of negative news in the trade war between the U.S. and China, traders spent much of the week rejoicing the Fed’s decision and the potential for more gains ahead. All in all, stocks spent much of the week rising a welcome change to the past few weeks of volatility and lower returns.
Be sure to check out our previous Wrap here, when trade was still a problem.