US Stocks Markets Slump on Signs of Economic Slowdown

US Stocks Markets Slump on Signs of Economic Slowdown firstamericannews

US Stocks Markets.- Firstly, the health of the economy, and the resulting future path of interest rates, remain a key focus for investors. Job openings fell to 9.9 million in February, the lowest since 2021, down sharply from January’s downwardly revised 10.6 million, the Labor Department said Tuesday.

That came after data showed Monday that manufacturing activity declined for a fifth consecutive month. Hiring data for March is expected Friday, which will give investors more information on the labor market’s health as can be seen.

“That drop in job openings is suggesting a cooling off even before any tightening credit conditions from banking stress,” said Jake Remley, senior portfolio manager at Income Research and Management.

US Stocks Markets have started April quietly, after a tumultuous first quarter. Major indexes held strong in the face of a banking crisis that caught the financial world by surprise in March. All three major stock indexes finished the first three months of the year with gains, despite a major selloff in bank stocks and highly volatile bond-market trading.

“We’ve been through a very significant inflation period, and we have followed that with a significant rate hike period,” said Jason Pride, chief investment officer of private wealth at Glenmede. “Historically speaking, that hasn’t been very good for the economy.”

Oil prices inched higher. The front-month contract for the Brent crude benchmark inched up by a penny to $84.94 a barrel, having posted the largest gain in more than a year Monday after a group of Saudi-led producers said they would cut output.

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“We are in wait-and-see mode in terms of how the economy plays out,” said Brian O’Reilly, head of US Stocks Markets strategy at Mediolanum International Funds. Higher interest rates are beginning to take their toll on the economy, he added. “We are not waving the white flag just yet, but there are enough issues out there that we are relatively cautious.”

Yields on U.S. government bonds fell. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note dropped to 3.363%, from 3.430% Monday. Bond yields and prices move in opposite directions.

Shares of online marketplace Etsy rose 4.4%, while Prudential Financial stock advanced 1.8%.

Finally. shares of Virgin Orbit fell 19% after Richard Branson’s satellite-launching company filed for bankruptcy and said it was working to sell itself. AMC Entertainment shares fell 19%, after the movie-theater operator said it would settle a lawsuit brought by shareholders.

Overseas indexes were mixed. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index rose 0.4%. The Shanghai Composite Index added 0.5%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.7%. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 fell 0.1%.

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