From the category archives:

Monthly Roundup

Mixed economic reports from across the globe combined with rising geopolitical tensions in Ukraine weighed heavily on the markets in March. Investors digested several key political moves this month, with President Obama announcing sanctions against key individuals in Putin’s inner circle, as well as the U.S.’s willingness to impose additional sanctions should Russia not reverse its course. In other macro news, the Fed announced it will pull back to $55 billion from $65 billion for its monthly bond-buying program. The central bank also eliminated the reference to the 6.5% unemployment rate as a threshold to consider raising rates; furthermore, several Fed officials projected that their first increase in interest rates will come in 2015 [see The Fed Effect: How Monetary Policy Impacts Your ETFs].

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It was another up-and-down month for Wall Street in February, as investors weighed a mixed bag of earnings and economic reports. February saw the Philadelphia Federal Reserve index of manufacturing activity fall into negative territory for the first time in nine months; the Fed cited severe winter weather as the primary reason behind the weakness. Retail sales also came in below expectations while U.S. residential construction and building permits fell 16% and 5.4%, respectively. Investors also paid close attention to the most recent Fed minutes, which indicated that a few central bank officials argued for raising interest rates sooner than expected [see The Fed Effect: How Monetary Policy Impacts Your ETFs].

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Wall Street got off to a rocky start in 2014, with January proving to be the worst month for U.S. equities in more than a year. At the end of the month, the Federal Reserve announced it would cut back further on its stimulus measures, which consequently sent emerging market equities into a tailspin. Emerging markets […]

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In November, investors witnessed the Dow Jones Industrial Average pierce the 16,000 mark, closing above that level for the first time; the Nasdaq also breached the 4,000 level for the first time in 13 years. In economic news, the Federal Reserve dominated the headlines after the Senate Banking Committee voted to approve Janet Yellen’s nomination, sending […]

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Last month, Wall Street turned its attention to Washington, as Congress struggled to reach a bipartisan budget and debt ceiling agreement. For two weeks, the U.S. federal government shut down, closing the doors on all “non-essential” operations. Though Capitol Hill was able to reach a last minute deal to reopen the government and suspend the debt ceiling, […]

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July was dominated by Q2 earnings reports, with low expectations going into the season. While trading was lackluster and earnings reports were mixed at times, Ben Bernanke has continued charging forward with his plans to work the economy off of QE and back into a self sustaining cycle. Ending the month was the GDP results for […]

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June was a volatile month on Wall Street, with investors feeling a major change in the investment landscape. Though speculations of Fed tapering dominated the markets, emerging markets equities stole the spotlight after experiencing a massive exodus of funds towards the end of the month. The BRIC markets (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) were among […]

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May was yet another strong month in the markets, with few investors selling early this year to avoid a summer slump. However, some investors were spooked early in the month after the FOMC rate decision and press conference. In its statement, the Fed said it would continue its $85 billion a month bond buying program, […]

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April was a month of economic reporting on all sides, and the majority of the market finished the month with strong returns. Disappointing ISM and labor data was seen both early and late in the month, as April saw a slowdown in the growth of new U.S. private sector jobs. Gold dominated the headlines after the precious […]

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March was a month of ups and downs, with the S&P reaching record highs and the European Union scrambling to clean up after the banking crisis in Cyprus. Small businesses and retail sales enjoyed a strong month, with positive effects spilling over into other areas of the U.S. markets. Investors were kept on their toes near […]

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February continued the bull run in the U.S. market, with reports every week showing stronger economic growth both domestically and overseas. Even the arguing in Washington and worries of sequestration do not seem to be slowing down the upward market trend [for updates on all new ETFs, sign up for the free ETFdb newsletter]. After the slow rate of […]

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December was another slow month for ETF growth, as many investors were still trying to brace for the fiscal cliff, and by the end of the month many were not focused on markets, but taking time off to be with family and friends around the holidays [for updates on all new ETFs, sign up for the free […]

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