The S&P 500 has cranked up to a new peak, closing the week at 4,594.63 points, fueling gains in three out of five trading sessions. The SPDR S&P 500 Trust ETF (NYSEARCA:SPY) soared 0.83% during the week, bringing the index up by 0.77%.
November came to a close on a historic note, with the S&P 500, Nasdaq Composite, and the Dow notching their best monthly performance this year and one of their best Novembers on record. The abundance of favorable economic data and positive comments from Federal Reserve speakers has fueled optimism that the central bank is poised for a smooth landing – where inflation decreases without harming employment or growth.
This week’s gains dispatched the S&P 500 to its highest closing level of the year, positioning the market for a robust year-end finish. As December arrived, investors are hopeful that the momentum of November will carry into a “Santa Claus” rally.
The week commenced with a focus on the retail sector following record-breaking Cyber Monday sales. Economic indicators further heightened the optimism, with the second estimate of U.S. Q3 GDP growth being revised upward, and Thursday’s personal income and outlays report showing a moderation in the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge.
Fed chair Jerome Powell’s comments during a fireside chat at Spelman College initially attempted to temper rate cut expectations, but ultimately confirmed the central bank’s reluctance to hike rates further, boosting traders’ confidence. Moreover, positive commentary from Fed Governor Christopher Waller and Chicago Fed President Austan Goolsbee also contributed to the upbeat market sentiment.
The positive economic data spurred investors to flock to bonds, driving Treasury yields lower and bolstering equities. Bond demand was evident at the Treasury note auctions, although some auctions fell short of expectations.
Across the 11 sectors of the S&P 500, nine ended in the green, with Real Estate making an impressive 5% jump and Communication Services and Energy being the key decliners. Here’s a breakdown of the performance of the sectors and their accompanying SPDR Select Sector ETFs.
An image showcasing the sectors’ year-to-date performance and their comparison with the S&P 500 closes off the information, as investors look ahead to future events in the market.