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U.S. equities struggle for direction to close out a solid year

William Riegel, Chief Investment Officer, TIAA Investments


December 29, 2016

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Equity and fixed-income markets

Global equity markets were mixed during the holiday-shortened week.The S&P 500 Index got off to a good start on the back of strong consumer confidence data before giving ground over the next two days. With a gain of about 12% for the year to date through December 28, the index is on track to register its eighth consecutive one-year advance. 

Overseas, Europe’s broad STOXX 600 Index slipped after reaching a fresh 2016 high, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index posted a modest loss. For the year through December 28, these indexes have lagged the S&P 500 in both local (+1.6% and +0.6% for the STOXX 600 and Nikkei 225, respectively) and U.S. dollar (-2.0% and +3.6%) terms.

William Riegel, Chief Investment Officer, TIAA Investments


Article Highlights

In U.S. fixed-income markets, the yield on the bellwether 10-year U.S. Treasury note, which moves in the opposite direction of its price, was edging downward on thin trading volume. The yield on the 2-year note was up slightly but remained below its December 15 close of 1.29%, a more than seven-year high.

Current updates to the week’s market results are available here.

U.S. data releases are mostly positive

This week was light in terms of U.S. economic reports.

A number of closely watched releases, including the December payrolls report and unemployment rate, are scheduled for the week of January 2 and have the potential to move markets in what should be heavier post-holiday trading.

The next Weekly Market Update will be published on Friday, January 6, 2017.