Market Perspective for April 19, 2019

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was the best performing index this week, gaining 0.56 percent. The Nasdaq climbed 0.19 percent. The S&P 500 Index fell 0.08 percent and the Russell 2000 Index declined 1.20 percent.

Earnings season has been positive thus far. Bank of America (BAC), UnitedHealth Group (UNH), Union Pacific (UNP), Honeywell (HON), Pepsi (PEP), International Business Machines (IBM), Netflix (NFLX), Morgan Stanley (MS) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) beat estimates.

Honeywell shares gained 3.78 percent on Friday, propelling several industrial ETFs. SPDR Industrial (XLI) rose 1.15 percent and SPDR Industrial (XLI) gained 1.33 percent.

SPDR Technology (XLK) increased 1.31 percent for the week, while SPDR Consumer Staples (XLP) advanced 1.52 percent. XLP’s gain was due in part due to Pepsi’s strong earnings report, which hit a new all-time high.

Qualcomm (QCOM) and Apple (AAPL) settled their litigation over patent licensing, clearing the way for cooperation on 5G handsets. Qualcomm gained 42.92 percent on the week, Apple 2.48 percent and Intel 4.84 percent. VanEck Semiconductor (SMH) climbed 4.82 percent.

U.S. flash PMIs showed the manufacturing sector is still expanding.  Retail sales jumped 1.6 percent in March and 1.2 percent ex-autos, both numbers were far ahead of forecasts. Weekly jobless claims plummeted to a new 50-year low of 192,000.  The homebuilders’ confidence index increased to 63. Each of these economic indicators are very good for our economy.

The U.S. Dollar Index outperformed major equity indexes, with PowerShares U.S. Dollar Index Bullish (UUP) gaining 0.62 percent.

iShares MSCI Emerging Markets (EEM) returned 0.43 percent and iShares MSCI EAFE (EFA) added 0.33 percent.

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