Weekly Market Analysis – Week 42 – 14th To 18th October

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After US & China agree on “Phase 1” of the trade deal, the market spiked bullishly. Tariffs that are scheduled for Oct are also called off. So is the market finally going to retake the all time high again this week?

Market Performance Summary

The stock market endured a volatile start to the week, but a strong second half helped the major averages secure gains. The S&P 500 rose 0.6% while the Nasdaq Composite outperformed, gaining 0.9% since last Friday.

Trade-related headlines were the focus of the week, which saw the latest round of talks between officials from China and the U.S on Thursday and Friday. The S&P 500 fell below its 50-day moving average early in the week when it was announced that 28 Chinese companies were put on a blacklist that blocks them from doing business with U.S. companies without a special license. The news led to concerns that official discussions on Thursday and Friday would not yield any results.

However, the overall tone improved on Wednesday and Thursday amid a torrent of mostly positive-sounding headlines. The S&P 500 reclaimed its 50-day moving average on Thursday, jumping to a ten-day high on Friday. The Friday session featured news about a partial trade deal being reached, but the details were underwhelming. Also on Friday, the Federal Reserve announced that it will begin regular purchases of Treasury bills at a pace of $60 bln per month on October 15 and continue into the second quarter of 2020 or longer.

Seven out of eleven sectors ended the week with gains, climbing between 0.8% (communication services) and 1.9% (materials). On the downside, countercyclical real estate (-0.6%), consumer staples (-0.9%), and utilities (-1.4%) recorded losses as Treasury yields rose amid an improvement in risk tolerance.

Apple (AAPL) rallied 3.9% to a fresh record high, boosted by news about increased production of components for the iPhone 11. Utility provider PG&E (PCG) lost more than 25.0% for the week on a negative court ruling.