Friday 2nd July 2021
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US markets have been on a streak and given investors a cause for celebration with the Dow Jones the key US exchanges all finished higher. The Dow Jones Market Data Group reported that the Dow finished up 12585.35 points, or 57.42%, over the last five quarters, making it the largest five-quarter percentage gain since 1976. The S&P saw its greatest five-quarter percentage gain since 1936, 66.27%, over the past five quarters, the Nasdaq has gained 88.36%, up 6803.85 points, in the same period.
On the economic news front the ongoing worker shortage, was a common theme in the day’s economic data. Jobless claims continued to decline reaching their lowest level since the pandemic shutdown. Activity at U.S. factories increased at a slightly slower rate according to the Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) purchasing managers’ index (PMI). Both the employment and manufacturing data released today supports continued growth but at a slower rate. Friday’s jobs report is expected to show payrolls growing by 700,000 and unemployment down to 5.7%. However, too-strong economic data could be a bad thing for markets if it caused the Fed to raise rates faster than expected. After Friday’s jobs data, the markets will be looking forward to the second-quarter earnings season set start in a few weeks.
European shares rose on Thursday as investors focused on signs of a steady economic recovery, worrying less about a jump in inflation and the spread of the Delta Covid variant. European STOXX 600 rose 0.6%.
Asian shares were marginally weaker. The Shanghai Composite index closed 0.07% down while CSI300 index was up 0.11% after falling as much as 0.62% earlier. Japan’s Nikkei index closed down 0.29%. Hong Kong’s stock market is closed yesterday.
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