For the week ending Friday, September 2, 2008, the major U.S. Indices finished up for a week marked with the demise of more financial stocks, sluggish Retail Sales data, a steeper than expected decline in Pending Home Sales, and a looming hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. Volatility continues to dominate the markets as the Dow posted a 2 day consecutive up/down point move of 569 points on Monday and Tuesday (up 289 and then down 280), its largest 2-day up/down point swing since June 6. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) which measures market uncertainty reached an intraday high of 26.67 on Friday.
For the week ending Friday, September 5, 2008, the U.S. markets ended in negative territory for the week after weak employment data and declines in auto and retail sales pointed to weaker consumer spending and a greater economic slowdown. The unemployment rate jumped to a 5-year high, soaring to 6.1%. On Thursday, the three major Indices fell back into bear market territory by dropping 20% from their market peaks set last fall. Both the Dow & Nasdaq Composite had their worst daily closes since July 26, with drops of more than 340 points for the Dow and 75 points for the Nasdaq.
The European Central Bank looks set to leave rates on hold on Thursday but the move is unlikely to contribute to a strengthening of the euro, as the signs of weakness in the euro zone economy intensify. Vote on which currency will gain the most by the end of the year.
The dollar rose on Monday to its highest this year against a basket of major currencies, boosted by a sharp fall in oil prices, while sterling extended its recent slide and fell to new record lows against the euro.
Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda said on Monday that he had decided to resign in an effort to break a political deadlock.
For the week and month ending Friday, August 29, 2008, the major U.S. Indices ended slightly lower for the week but up for the month. The markets had a volatile week, sinking first on housing price drops and an up-tick in oil prices, then rallying on better-than-expected GDP numbers, and finally falling to end the week on worse-than-expected personal income and spending data. The Dow hit a 200+ point rally on Thursday, its largest one day gain since 8/8. The NASDAQ led the indices to the downside this week, down nearly 2%. For the August close, the Dow, Nasdaq and S&P all finished up 1.5% or more, marking the best monthly gain since April for the Dow & S&P, and best month for the Nasdaq since May.
The U.S. dollar rallied against a currency basket Friday, on track for its best monthly gain in nearly 16 years, boosted by a batch of data showing a far more stable growth path for the United States than the rest of the world.
For the week ending Friday, August 22, 2008, the U.S. major Indices fell for the week on the unknown future of mortgage giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, downbeat home construction July data, and soaring producer prices. The NASDAQ Composite performed the worst for the week, declining 1.54%, its steepest decline since Independence Day week. However, Friday was a positive day for the markets helped by a welcome speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and a pull back in the price of crude. The Dow had three days of triple-digit point gains & losses, netting to finish almost flat for the week.
The U.S. dollar eased off a seven-month peak against the yen on Monday, halting an 11-day advance against a basket of currencies, as falling stocks and rebounding gold saw investors skim profits off a recent rally.
For the week ending Friday, August 15, 2008, U.S. major Indices finished mixed, after the markets digested negative results including a surge in CPI, a decline in retail sales, and continued expansion in unemployment claims. The Nasdaq Composite prevailed amongst the major U.S. indices, as it edged up 1.59% for the week, marking its fifth week of gains. Nasdaq gains were led by bullish comments on Amazon (AMZN) which gained 7.3% for the week. The likelihood of the eurozone moving toward recession allowed for a stronger dollar against the euro, continued pressure on oil, and a positive impact on U.S. stocks as a potential safe haven.
The U.S. dollar jumped to a six-month high against the euro Friday amid signs the U.S. economic slowdown may be bottoming while growth in the euro zone stalls.
The U.S. dollar rallied to an almost six-month high against the euro Thursday amid growing concern over euro zone economic weakness and accelerating inflation in the United States.
Stabilizing U.S. economic growth, falling oil prices and a deteriorating outlook outside the United States have led Goldman Sachs to abandon its ten-year bearish stance on the U.S. dollar.
The U.S. dollar edged lower against the euro on Wednesday after a spike in crude oil prices rekindled worries about the world's largest economy's growth outlook.
A rally in the U.S. dollar stalled and the currency was little changed against the euro Tuesday as some investors sold the greenback to lock in profits after it touched multi-month highs.
The dollar extended last week's rally and rose versus the euro on Monday as investors assessed how hard the slowdown blighting the U.S. economy would hit the rest of the world.
The dollar soared Friday in what analysts are calling a game-changing move as concerns about the deteriorating euro zone economy gripped investors and commodities sold off.
For the week ending Friday, August 8, 2008, the U.S. markets ended the week on a positive note, cheered by a retreat in commodity prices, a Fed’s decision to keep rates steady at 2%, better-than-expected results in pending home sales, and a stronger dollar.
The dollar index rose to a 5-1/2-month high Thursday after a surprise rise in the U.S. pending home sales index for June.
The dollar extended gains and rose 1 percent versus the Japanese yen on Wednesday as crude prices declined further and U.S. stocks eased some of their losses.