U.S. and World News
- After unveiling their version of healthcare reform legislation, Senate Republican leaders decided to delay a vote until after the July 4th . This came after the Congressional Budget Office scoring reported that the legislation in its current form would result in 22 million more people being uninsured by 2020. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell said there was a ‘really good chance’ the bill will eventually pass despite the delay and a number of GOP lawmakers expressing their concerns over the bill.
- Illinois is facing the possibility of becoming the first U.S. state to have its credit rating downgraded to ‘junk’ status by S&P. State lawmakers have until Friday night’s deadline to agree on a budget, something that hasn’t happened since 2015, before S&P stated that it will lower Illinois’ credit rating for the 4th time in the last year.
- Markets ended the week slightly lower. The S&P 500 fell by 0.58% and closed at 2,423. The Dow Jones decreased by 0.21% for the week and closed at 21,350. Year to date, the S&P is up 9.31% and the Dow is up 9.30%.
- Interest rates rose on both the short and long ends this week. The 5 year and 10 year U.S. Treasury Notes are now yielding 1.89% and 2.30%, respectively.
- The spot price of WTI Crude Oil popped 7.67% this week, closing at $46.31 per barrel. Year to date, Oil prices have fallen 13.79%.
- The spot price of Gold ended the week lower by 1.20%, closing at $1,241.61 per ounce. Year to date, Gold prices are up 8.20%.
- Initial jobless claims increased by 2,000 from last week, coming in at 244,000. The Labor Department noted no unusual factors affecting the data this week. The four week moving average for claims moved down to 242,000.
- The Case-Shiller home price index rose by 0.3% in April, below consensus expectations of 0.5%. By city, Detroit (+1.8%) and Seattle (+1.1%) showed the largest increases, while Cleveland (-1.0%) and Boston (-0.7%) showed the largest decreases in prices. Over the last 12 months, home prices as measured by the index have risen 5.7%.
- The headline PCE index (measure of inflation) declined -0.1% in May, lower than the estimated 0.2% increase. Over the last 12 months, headline PCE inflation has risen 1.4%.
- Core PCE (excludes food and energy, Fed’s preferred inflation method), rose 0.1% in May, in line with expectations. Over the last 12 months, Core PCE inflation has risen 1.4%.
Fact of the Week
- Just 54% of over 18,000 adults surveyed in April 2017 own stocks (either directly or indirectly through a mutual fund or exchange traded fund) in their personal accounts or pre-tax retirement accounts. (Source: Gallup)
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