Table of Contents



Stocks React to Big CPI Shift


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


Stocks React to Big CPI Shift

A surge in consumer inflation unsettled investors, leading to a turbulent week of trading on Wall Street.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 1.14%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 fell 1.39%. The Nasdaq Composite index dropped 2.34% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, lost 3.02%.

Inflation Concerns
The market has been troubled recently by building inflationary pressures. Investors are concerned that rising prices may hurt corporate profits and force the Fed to tighten its monetary policy sooner than anticipated. Worse, investors fear the Fed may have to react more aggressively if it waits too long to act.
After back-to-back losses, the retreat in stock prices culminated on Wednesday, following the release of the higher-than-anticipated Consumer Price Index (CPI) report.
Stocks managed to claw back some of the week’s losses with a Thursday-Friday rebound, sparked by investors doing some bargain hunting.
Consumer Prices Spike
Wednesday’s release of April’s CPI inflamed investors’ inflation fears, as consumer prices rose 0.8% in April and jumped by 4.2% year-over-year. These numbers were above expectations.
April price increases were led by a remarkable 10% increase in used cars, with additional pockets of sharp increases, notably in transportation services and commodities. Perhaps equally concerning is that energy costs showed a decline during April, a price weakness that may…

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Labor Numbers Reflect Uncertainty


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


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Labor Numbers Reflect Uncertainty

Stocks closed mixed last week as signs of continued economic recovery and upbeat earnings helped some sectors while the struggles persisted for high-growth companies.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 2.67%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 rose 1.23%. But the Nasdaq Composite index, home for many high-growth companies, lost 1.51%. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, advanced 1.20%.

Mixed Market
Energy, financials, materials, and industrials led the market higher on more upbeat news regarding the economic recovery.
But technology and other high-valuation companies didn’t participate in the rally, weighed down by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s comments that interest rates may need to rise. Despite a decline in long bond yields, high growth stocks were under selling pressure for most of the week.
On Friday, a miss on April employment numbers seemed to dial back fears that the Fed might have to adjust interest rates. Stocks rallied on the news, especially some of the hard hit high-valuation companies.
Labor Market Puzzle
The labor market appears to be gaining momentum ahead of a fuller summer reopening. The Automated Data Processing National Employment Report showed that private payrolls rose by 742,000 jobs (the largest gain since September 2020), while new jobless claims …

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Earnings Season Crests Some Expectations


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


Earnings Season Crests Some Expectations

Stocks meandered around a flatline in a busy week of corporate earnings, ending the trading week slightly lower.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average slid 0.50%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 was flat (+0.02%). The Nasdaq Composite index surrendered 0.39%. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, rose 0.18%.

Seeking Direction
Though the S&P 500 and Nasdaq established new record highs at the start of the week, stocks struggled to find traction as the week wore on.
Investor sentiment was dampened by rising COVID-19 infections in India and Japan, along with mounting inflation worries. Stocks finally caught some lift from strong quarterly reports issued by two big technology companies and an upbeat first-quarter Gross Domestic Product growth number, sending the S&P 500 to a fresh record high.
Once again, though, stocks failed to follow through, as the market retreated in the final day of trading to …

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Welcome to Stuart Financial Group’s May-June 2021 Bi-Monthly Newsletter.
It is hard to believe that Summer 2021 is right around the corner! In this issue we proudly announce Bryan’s new Certified Estate Planner certification ™ and provide you with a preview of this summer’s Olympics in Tokyo, Japan are that scheduled to take place Friday, July 23, through Sunday, Aug. 8., along with how to plan a staycation if safe traveling is not in your immediate future. Happy reading!


Table of Contents



Mixed Signals, Choppy Week


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


Mixed Signals, Choppy Week

The crosscurrents of strong corporate earnings, rising global cases of COVID-19, and the specter of higher capital gains taxes led to a choppy week of trading that left stock prices slightly lower for the week.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.46%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 slipped 0.13%. The Nasdaq Composite index fell 0.25% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, dropped 0.47%.

A Directionless Week
Despite continued better-than-expected corporate earnings, stocks retreated as concerns over rising global COVID-19 infections weighed on investor sentiment. A mid-week rally erased much of these losses, with reopening stocks and small cap companies leading the market.
The stock market resumed its decline in reaction to reports that President Biden supported a capital gains tax increase on wealthy Americans. The Biden news prompted worries that stocks could come under pressure this year if such an increase were to go into effect next year.
Solid economic reports, along with a reassessment of the capital gains news, helped stocks to …

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Tech Stocks On the Rise


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


Tech Stocks On the Rise

Strong economic data and a resurgent technology sector propelled stocks to solid gains last week.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 1.95%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 picked up 2.71%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index gained 3.12%. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, gained 1.96%.

Technology Leads
A blow-out jobs report and an all-time high in the ISM-Services Index, coupled with the continued rebound in technology stocks, powered the Dow Industrials and S&P 500 to record highs to open a new week of trading.
After taking a breather mid-week, stocks resumed their climb amid lower bond yields, widening momentum in vaccination efforts, and falling concerns over corporate tax rate hikes. As bond yields settled lower, technology shares rallied, lifting the S&P 500 to another record high on Thursday, its 19th closing record high this year.
Despite a surge in March producer prices, stocks added to their gains to close out a…

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S&P Rises above 4,000


Food for Thought


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Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


S&P Rises Above 4,000

Overcoming a rocky start, stocks rallied into the close of a holiday-shortened week of trading as technology shares staged a powerful recovery and investors reacted positively to President Biden’s infrastructure spending proposal.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.24%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 picked up 1.14%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index rose 2.60%. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, slipped 0.43%.

S&P 500 Hits 4,000
Monday opened with two banks reporting they face losses due to the default of a small U.S. hedge fund. That news, combined with rising yields, higher new cases of COVID-19, and a public warning of new virus variants, started the week off on an unsettled note.
Despite the shaky start, upbeat economic reports helped spark a rally that was paced by gains in the technology sector. The market also reacted positively on Wednesday to the introduction of…

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Rocky Week Despite Upbeat Signals


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


Rocky Week Despite Upbeat Signals

A rocky week with wide price swings led to mixed results for stocks last week, as investors grappled with anxieties over economic growth and weakness in technology and other high-growth stocks.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 1.36%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 1.57%. The Nasdaq Composite index fell 0.58% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, slipped 1.67%.

Stocks Churn
After a promising start to the week, stocks turned negative on mounting concerns about economic growth in Europe, with broad losses in energy, cyclicals, and technology.
Though bond yields backed off their highs and Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen and Fed Chair Jerome Powell both struck an optimistic tone on the economy, stocks posted back-to-back losses on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Thursday trading was emblematic of the week’s volatile action. The S&P 500 dropped nearly one percent earlier in the day following Powell’s comment about the Fed eventually rolling back its bond purchase program, then rallied to close with a…

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Modest Losses After Choppy Week


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


Photo of the week


Modest Losses After Choppy Week

Rising bond yields and improving economic conditions led to a choppy week of trading that ended in modest losses for investors.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.46%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 declined 0.77%. The Nasdaq Composite index lost 0.79% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, gained 1.24%.

Rising Yields
The stock market began the week on a positive note, rising on optimism over the economic reopenings and a decline in bond yields. Technology shares staged a strong turnaround from the previous week.
Following the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) meeting announcement reaffirming the Fed’s easy-money policies, the Dow Industrials and the S&P 500 recorded new record closing highs.
Markets reversed themselves on Thursday as a surge in yields sent technology …

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Economy Reacts to COVID-19 Stimulus


Food for Thought


Tax Tips


Healthy Living


Weekly Riddle


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Economy Reacts to COVID-19 Stimulus

Stocks touched new record highs last week as bond yields steadied, a fiscal relief bill was signed into law, and confidence in a strong economic recovery grew.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 4.07%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 tacked on 2.64%. The Nasdaq Composite index rose 3.09% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, gained 3.01%.

Dow 32,000
Stocks marched higher as bond yields leveled off and the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill moved through the legislative process. A muted inflation number and a better-than-expected jobless claims report evidenced an improving economy absent an attendant rise in inflation.
The technology sector was particularly volatile, with the Nasdaq Composite falling into correction territory to start the week as investors rotated into cyclical opportunities.
Technology rebounded strongly as bond yields stabilized and bargain hunters purchased tech names at reduced prices. The bounceback propelled the S&P 500 to a record high, while the reopening trade drove the Dow Industrials …

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