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With the end of September came the end of the third quarter. And a wild end it was. Stocks spent much of the week trending lower on bouts of high volatility. China’s Evergrande fiasco from last week spilled over into this week after the firm failed to make a key interest rate payment.
At the same time, interest rates were the talk of traders. During the week, the benchmark 10-year Treasury spiked, routing stocks during mid-week. Fed Chair Powell testified before the Congress, and gave supportive speeches. Meanwhile, traders continued to question the timing of the Fed’s upcoming taper tantrum.
Economic data was mixed as well during the week. Measures of consumer confidence and manufacturing were bullish, yet not as bullish as before. However, housing data, measures of spending and the overall GDP rate were stronger than predicted.
As far as individual corporate actions, the dearth before the next earnings season begins resulted in very little corporate moves to boost overall trader sentiment.
In the end, stocks had a wild ride before finishing slightly up for the third quarter.
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