The Independent Market Observer

Market Thoughts for May 2021 [Video]

May 3, 2021

April was a good month for the markets. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq gained more than 5 percent, while the Dow was up almost 3 percent. These returns were driven, in part, by the medical news, with new case counts, hospitalizations, and deaths all down. While the medical risks declined, reopening accelerated. Job growth rose, and weekly layoffs dropped. Consumer confidence and spending also improved.

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Coronavirus Update: April 30, 2021 [Video]

April 30, 2021

Today, I'd like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. We’ve had good news on the medical front, as the fourth wave of the virus doesn’t seem to be gaining traction. Case counts and positive test rates are back to the lows we saw as the third wave subsided, and hospitalizations and death rates have improved. One potential problem is that vaccination rates have slowed, which we will need to keep an eye on.

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Coronavirus Update: April 16, 2021 [Video]

April 16, 2021

Today, I'd like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. On the medical front, we’ve seen modest deterioration over the past two weeks. Case counts and positive test rates have risen steadily, while hospitalizations and death rates have stabilized or increased by less than case growth. But with vaccinations continuing at an accelerating pace—the trend is now at more than 3.3 million per day—the race between vaccinations and the virus continues.

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Market Thoughts for April 2021 [Video]

April 5, 2021

In March, we saw a strong end to a healthy first quarter for stock markets. Both the Dow and S&P 500 here in the U.S. showed gains, while developed markets abroad showed lower but still positive returns. We also had good news on the economic front. Hiring rebounded, layoffs dropped, and consumer confidence rose to post-pandemic highs.

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Coronavirus Update: April 1, 2021 [Video]

April 1, 2021

Today, I'd like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. After several weeks of improvement on the medical front, we’re starting to see modest deterioration as the country reopens. Case counts and positive test rates are back to early March levels, while hospitalizations and death rates have stabilized. While the short-term risks are real, we do have a better outlook for the next two to three months. At that point, between vaccinations and existing exposure, we should be at or close to herd immunity.

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Coronavirus Update: March 19, 2021 [Video]

March 19, 2021

Today, I'd like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. The medical situation continues to improve, as the vaccination campaign moves forward. Still, case growth remains above the levels seen between the second and third waves, and positive rates have not improved in weeks. We still have a very real pandemic on our hands.

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Coronavirus Update: March 4, 2021 [Video]

March 4, 2021

Today, I'd like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. On the medical front, the stats have been getting better for the past two months, with case growth and hospitalizations down. That’s the good news. The bad news is that we are now at levels we saw at the peak of the second wave. And with some states starting to reopen and ending mandatory mask wearing, there are real things to worry about in the months ahead.

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