The major U.S. stock indexes saw a second consecutive week of gains, recouping much of the losses incurred during three weeks of decline in April. The week was marked by volatility, with stocks plunging on Tuesday but rebounding on Thursday and Friday, driven by positive sentiment surrounding earnings and jobs data.

On Friday, U.S. stock indexes climbed while bond yields fell following a jobs report that alleviated concerns about inflationary pressures stemming from the labor market, potentially altering the outlook for interest-rate adjustments. The economy added 175,000 jobs in April, a decrease from the upwardly revised 315,000 figure in March, and wages grew at a 3.9% annual rate compared to 4.1% in March.

Earnings at major technology companies continued to strengthen as earnings season approached its conclusion. Analysts anticipated a 5.0% increase in first-quarter earnings for S&P 500 companies compared to the same period last year, according to projections based on released results and upcoming reports. This forecast represented an increase from the 3.5% growth rate projected just a week earlier.

U.S. government bond yields declined, snapping a four-week streak of increases that had driven the yield of the 10-year U.S. Treasury bond to its highest level since last November. The yield closed at 4.50% on Friday, down from 4.67% at the end of the previous week.

The S&P 500 experienced a nearly 4.2% decline in April, marking its first negative month following five consecutive months of gains that had accumulated a total increase of 25.3%. Among the 11 sectors, utilities stocks were the sole positive performer, rising by an average of 1.6%, while the real estate sector recorded the steepest decline at 8.6%, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.

As anticipated, the U.S. Federal Reserve maintained its benchmark interest rate at the highest level seen in over two decades, refraining from implementing any rate cuts. Fed officials acknowledged a recent lack of progress in bringing inflation closer to the Fed’s 2% long-term target rate.

Consumer sentiment in the U.S. sharply declined to its lowest level since 2022, with many respondents expressing concerns about inflation and the employment outlook, according to the Conference Board’s latest report.

The eurozone’s economy began 2024 with moderate growth, recording a 0.3% annual GDP growth rate in the first quarter. Additionally, a report on Tuesday revised the prior quarter’s figure from an initial estimate of 0.0% to negative 0.1%, indicating that the eurozone technically experienced a recession in the latter half of the previous year, as its third-quarter 2023 result also showed a slight negative growth.

Major U.S. Economic Reports

Employment cost indexQ11.2%0.9%
S&P Case-Shiller home price index (20 cities)Feb.7.3%6.6%
Chicago Business Barometer (PMI)April37.941.4
Consumer confidenceApril97.0103.1
ADP employmentApril192,000208,000
Construction spendingMarch-0.2%0.0%
ISM manufacturingApril49.2%50.3%
Job openingsMarch8.5 million8.8 million
Auto salesApril15.5 million
Initial jobless claimsApril 27208,000207,000
U.S. trade deficitMarch-$69.4B-$69.5B
U.S. productivityQ10.3%3.2%
U.S. unit-labor costsQ14.7%0.0%
Factory ordersMarch1.6%1.2%
U.S. employment reportApril175,000315,000
U.S. unemployment rateApril3.9%3.8%
U.S. hourly wagesApril0.2%0.4%
Hourly wages year over year3.9%4.1%
ISM servicesApril49.4%51.4%

Closing Prices for the Week

Dow Jones Industrials Average38,675.68
Nasdaq Composite16,156.33
S&P 500 Index5,127.79
CBOE Volatility Index13.49
S&P GSCI573.18
U.S. Dollar Index105.030
10-Year T-Note (Jun ’24)108-275
Crude Oil WTI (Jun ’24)78.11
Natural Gas (Jun ’24)2.142
Gold (Jun ’24)2,308.6
Silver (Jul ’24)26.690
Corn (Jul ’24)460-2
Wheat (Jul ’24)622-4
Soybean (Jul ’24)1215-0
Coffee (Jul ’24)200.75
Sugar #11 (Jul ’24)19.28

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