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Budget News

  • US Stocks extend losses
  • March 04,2021  10:03
  • The US stocks tumbled for second straight session on Wednesday, 03 March 2021, weighing down the S&P 500, the Dow index, and the broader Nasdaq deep into the red terrain, as rising Treasury yields offset stimulus optimism.

    At the close of trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average index declined 121.43 points, or 0.39%, to 31,270.09. The S&P500 index dropped 50.57 points, or 1.31%, to 3,819.72. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index fell 361.04 points, or 2.7%, to 12,997.75.

    The continued weakness on Wall Street came as bond yields showed a notable rebound after trending lower over the past few sessions. The U.S. 10-year Treasury yield climbed more than 8 basis points to a high of 1.49%, later settled at 1.47%, pressuring areas of the market with high valuations. It was still off last week's peak of above 1.61% that roiled stock markets as investors bet on rising inflation.

    Technology stocks fell most in response to a rise in bond yields. Shares in Amazon fell by 2.8% and shares in Alphabet (Google) were down by 2.6%. But energy, financials and industrial stocks generally rose. Shares in Exxon Mobil rose by 0.9% after it unveiled plans to grow dividends and curb spending.

    ECONOMIC NEWS: US Private Sector Job Growth Slows In February- US private sector employment rose by 117,000 jobs in February after climbing by an upwardly revised 195,000 jobs in January, payroll processor ADP reported on Wednesday. The report showed employment in the service-providing sector increased by 131,000 jobs, reflecting notable job growth in trade/transportation/utilities and health care/social assistance. Employment in leisure/hospitality edged up by 26,000 jobs. Meanwhile, ADP said employment in the goods-producing sector dipped by 14,000 jobs amid decreases in both manufacturing and construction jobs. The report also showed employment at mid-sized businesses rose by 57,000 jobs, while small and large businesses added 32,000 jobs and 28,000 jobs, respectively.

    US ISM Feb Service Sector Activity Recoils From 2-Year High- US services PMI dropped to 55.3 in February from 58.7 in January, although a reading above 50 still indicates growth in the sector, the Institute for Supply Management reported on Wednesday. The pullback by the services PMI came after the index reached its highest level since hitting 58.8 in February of 2019. The decrease by the headline index was partly due to a slowdown in the pace of growth in new orders, as the new orders index tumbled to 51.9 in February from 61.8 in January. The business activity index also slid to 55.5 in February from 59.9 in January, while the employment index fell to 52.7 from 55.2. On the other hand, the report said the prices index spiked to 71.8 in February from 64.2 in January, indicating a significant acceleration in the pace of price growth.

    Economic Activity Expanded Modestly From January To Mid-February For Most Fed Districts, Says Beige Book- The Federal Reserve's Beige Book, a compilation of economic evidence from the twelve Fed districts, released on Wednesday, said most businesses remain optimistic regarding the outlook for the next 6-12 months as COVID-19 vaccines become more widely distributed. The Fed described the district reports on consumer spending and auto sales as mixed while noting overall conditions in the leisure and hospitality sector continued to be restrained by ongoing COVID-19 restrictions.

    The report also said most districts saw moderate increases in overall manufacturing activity despite challenges from supply chain disruptions. With regard to employment, the Beige Book said most districts reported that employment levels rose over the reporting period, albeit slowly. On the inflation front, the Beige Book described the increase in non-labor input costs as moderate but highlighted notable increases in steel and lumber prices. The Fed noted the rise in costs was widely attributed to supply chain disruptions and to strong overall demand. Looking ahead, several Fed districts reported anticipating modest price increases over the next several months.

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