Market Watch: Payrolls Surge, Home Sales Dip, Fed Holds Rates Steady

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Market Watch: Payrolls Surge, Home Sales Dip, Fed Holds Rates Steady

SPY
S&P 500

Last Week: 0.63%
YTD: 4.01%
1 Year: 21.72%

DIA

Dow Jones Industrial Average

Last Week: 0.81%
YTD: 2.59%
1 Year: 16.25%

ONEQ
NASDAQ

Last Week: 0.02%
YTD: 3.97%
1 Year: 31.77% 

Russell 2000

Last Week: -2.51%
YTD: -3.14%
1 Year: 0.17% 

Large Growth

YTD: 6.03%
1 Year: 35.97% 

Large Value

YTD: 0.93%
1 Year: 6.56%

Job Report

Nonfarm payrolls expanded by 353,000 for the month. This was considerably more than the estimate of 185,000. The unemployment rate held at 3.7%, slightly lower than expectations of 3.8%. Unemployment rates continue to stay at historically low levels. The average hourly earnings also increased by 0.6%, almost double the projected increase. Year-over-year, wages are up 4.5%, again well above the estimate of 4.1% that was forecasted. The largest contributors to the increase in jobs in January came from professional and business services, followed by healthcare and retail. 

Home Sales

Home sales in 2023 dropped to their lowest levels in almost 30 years. Elevated mortgage rates and lack of supply kept buyers from entering the market. The lack of inventory also caused prices to soar on top of sky-high mortgage rates. Existing home sales were down 19% from the prior year. Industry experts expect home sales to rise in 2024. We have seen an uptick in mortgage applications, and interest rates are expected to decrease. 

Federal Reserve Meeting

The U.S. Fed kicked off 2024 with a decision to keep interest rates unchanged. Fed Chair Jerome Powell said the possibility of a recession is not elevated right now. “We’ve said that we want to be more confident that inflation is moving down to 2%,” said Powell in his press meeting. Their next meeting in March is likely to yield the same sentiment of delaying a rate cut. “We think we can be careful in approaching this decision just because of the strength that we’re seeing in the economy,” Powell stated. 

  • Alex Wolfe

    Alex is a Certified Financial Planner™. He brings nearly a decade of experience working with individuals, families, and business owners. Prior to working for Base Wealth Management, Alex worked for Fidelity Investments and an independent wealth management firm in Venice, FL. Through many years of practice, he specializes in helping clients navigate their financial goals through comprehensive financial planning. He received his bachelor’s degree in economics from Texas A&M University.

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2022 Tax Document Information

As a Base Wealth Management client, you should receive your paper tax documents via mail in the coming weeks. Or, if you previously had an online account with Pershing’s NetX360, you should be able to access your 2022 tax documents through that portal. 

If not, or if you experience any issues, please reach out to Tim O’Brien (tim.obrien@intervestintl.com).

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