Many Wall Street strategists are dusting off their 2015 targets for the S&P 500 index and trimming them for 2016.
Crashing-oil prices and fears of a global recession threw cold water on the index’s performance in 2015, causing it to fall short of the average expected gain of about 10%. With a handful of trading days left in the year and the S&P 500 SPX, -0.94% closing at 2,061 on Thursday (for a 0.1% gain year to date), only a handful of the more bearish analysts can hope to meet their 2015 targets — and only if a Santa Claus rally plays out.
The New York branch of the U.S. Federal Reserve, wary that a natural disaster or other eventuality could shut down its market operations as it approaches an interest rate hike, has added staff and bulked up its satellite office in Chicago.
Some market technicians have transferred from New York and others were hired at the office housed in the Chicago Fed, according to several people familiar with the build-out that began about two years ago, after Hurricane Sandy struck Manhattan.
Prices go up and prices go down. At the Federal Reserve, a bigger worry now is that they stay the same.
U.S. central bankers are betting the economy is near an inflection point where demand is strong enough to create more jobs, eventually nudging both wages and prices higher. A report Friday showed payrolls in the past three months rose the most in 17 years while wages showed the biggest gains since 2008, reinforcing views the threshold is close.
The U.S.’s AA+ credit rating was affirmed by Standard & Poor’s, which cited the resiliency and diversity of the economy, almost three years after downgrading the nation for the first time amid political wrangling.
There is a less than one-in-three probability that the ranking will change in the next two years, the New York-based company said in a statement today. The outlook on the rating is stable.
I’ve already explained why meaningful trade and financial sanctions against Russia are a non starter – everyone would lose from such action. Europe would be pushed back into recession, Russia into financial meltdown. This is not the sort of self harm Europe is prepared to contemplate right now. Indeed, thanks to the indiscretion of a UK official, who was snapped going into Downing Street with his briefing documents on display for all the world to see, we know this to be the case. Trade and financial sanctions have already been ruled out.