Markets rose modestly on Monday after investors weighed data from earnings season.
The Dow Jones today gained 40 points to close at 16,449.25. The S&P 500 is on its longest winning streak since October, rising 7 points to close at 1,871.89. The Nasdaq gained 26 points to close at 4,121.55, up for a fifth straight session.
Of the 87 companies in the S&P 500 to report results through today, approximately 62% have beaten earnings expectations, according to Thomson Reuters. This figure, however, is down from the 66% average of the last four quarters. Today's mark of five consecutive winnings days for the S&P 500 is the longest streak for the index since October 2013.
Here's your recap of five of today's major market events...
- Bad News for Housing: The U.S. housing market earned another downgrade this year. Following a topsy-turvy first quarter, U.S. mortgage titans Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac slashed their forecasts for expected construction and sales of houses for 2014. Doug Duncan, Fannie's chief economist, projects construction of 1.05 million housing units this year, cutting 50,000 units from his previous forecast. Just last week, Freddie economists cut their forecast of home sales for 2014 from 5.6 million to 5.5 million. Credit concerns continue to weigh on the markets.
- No Faith in the Markets: Americans still don't trust the U.S. markets. According a survey released on Monday by Bankrate.com, more than 7 in 10 Americans are "not more inclined to invest in stocks." The survey asked 1,000 households about their confidence in the markets, and 73% returned with a negative view. This is the third consecutive year that investors' confidence has eroded in the markets.
- Change of Guard: America's iconic automaker is going to have a new leader within the next years. According to Bloomberg, Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) will appoint current Chief Operating Officer Mark Fields as the successor to chief executive Alan Mulally. Reports indicate that Mulally, who was considered for the Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) chief executive officer position early this year, will be stepping down as soon as May 1. Fields has worked for Ford for 25 years.
About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.