Major U.S. stock indexes ended the day mixed but posted solid gains for November overall.
*The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 35,430.42 on Wednesday, up 0.04% for the day and 6.6% for the month.
*The S&P 500 ended at 4,550.58, down 0.09% on Wednesday but up 5.4% in November.
*The Nasdaq Composite finished at 14,258.49, down 0.16% on the day but gaining 4.3% for the month.
Stocks rallied this month on hopes that inflation has peaked, allowing the Fed to slow its pace of interest rate hikes. The October CPI report showed prices rising 7.7% annually, below expectations.
However, Fed officials have cautioned there is still work to do on inflation. Markets expect the Fed funds rate to peak around 5% in early 2023 before cuts begin later in the year.
The November jobs report on Friday was solid, with 263,000 jobs added and unemployment holding at 3.7%. This supports the case for the Fed to keep raising rates to cool the labor market.
Overall, stocks posted a strong November but face ongoing uncertainty about the path of inflation and interest rates. Key data to watch in December includes CPI and PPI reports as well as the next Fed policy announcement on December 14.
by Steve Macalbry
Disclaimer: This article is intended for informational purposes only. It should not be considered financial or investment advice. We do not hold any form of equity in the securities mentioned in this article. Always consult with a certified financial professional before making any financial decisions.