Wild Week As Fed Pivots
U.S. equity markets snapped a three-week skid on a historically volatile week as the start of earnings season partially eased investor jitters about rising interest rates, geopolitical concerns, and inflation.
Briefly dipping into "correction territory" before a late-week rally, the S&P 500 finished higher by 0.9% on the week while the tech-heavy Nasdaq finished flat and remains 15% below recent highs.
Real estate equities were mixed despite a solid start to REIT earnings season highlighted by a pair of dividend hikes and strong 2022 guidance. The Equity REIT index declined 0.3%.
Inflation has proven to be less "transitory" than the Fed expected. The PCE Price Index - the Fed's "preferred" measure of inflation- rose more than 5.8% from last year - the highest in more than three decades.
New Home Sales rose in December to a nine-month high, indicating that housing demand remained strong in late 2021 despite the rise in interest rates and historically low levels of housing supply.