John Hancock: Weekly Market Recap Week Ended June 4th
Moderate jobs gain
A monthly employment report released on Friday showed continued improvement in jobs growth and the unemployment rate, although the last two monthly gains have been smaller than the total in March. The economy generated 559,000 new jobs in May compared with 278,000 in April and 785,000 in March.
The modest monthly U.S. jobs gain that was reported on Friday eased concerns about the potential for a swift tightening of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s monetary policies, and that sentiment lifted government bond prices, extending a recent decline in yields. The yield of the 10-year U.S. Treasury bond slipped to 1.55%, down from a recent high of 1.74% in late March.
In the wake of strong first-quarter earnings, Wall Street analysts have recently upgraded their expectations for second-quarter results. During April and May, analysts raised their earnings forecasts for S&P 500 companies by 5.8%, according to FactSet. That’s the largest such increase since the research firm began tracking the metric in 2002.
A report scheduled to be released on Thursday will show whether a monthly spike in prices in April carried over into May. The Consumer Price Index report released last month showed that prices surged 4.2% for the 12-month period that ended in April—the most in any 12-month period since 2008.