Stock Market Slips; 20,000 Dow Remains Elusive – Dec. 21, 2016

Daily Stock Market News Dec. 21, 2016:  All three major indices had a slight correction today, causing the Dow to remain just below the 20,000 milestone.  The economy continues to show strength, with existing home sales hitting a ten year high.  See more economic news and today’s closing prices.

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U.S. Stock Market Closing Prices Dec. 21, 2016:

Dow Jones Industrial Averages:  19,941.96  -32.66  (-0.16 percent)

S & P 500:  2,265.19  -5.57  (-0.25 percent)

NASDAQ:  5,471.43  -12.51  (-0.23 percent)

Crude Oil:  $52.56 a barrel

Current Stock Market Trending Topics:

Oil prices continue to stay above $50 a barrel, helped by a U.S. crude inventory draw, as well as the recent agreement on production caps reached by the oil producing nations.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia is looking at developing alternative sources of energy, especially solar energy, to provide some of their needs.

As 2016 draws to an end, the Obama administration is also ending their eight years with 75 months of steady job growth, low inflation, increasing sales, rising incomes, strong consumer sentiment and overall positive economic news.  Investors are looking towards the Trump administration to see if the trend will continue, accelerate or reverse direction in 2017 and the following years.  Currently, U.S. existing home sales are at a 10 year high.

As a result of the high level of existing home sales, mortgage activity has ticked up, despite slightly higher rates.

Despite threats by the incoming administration, many U.S. products will still be manufactured overseas.

A number of analysts are predicting a recession sometime in the next year or two.  Timing it, however, is the problem.

The Economic Events Which Will Affect the Stock Market in December:

  • December 2 – Employment Situation Report for Nov., 2016 – The U.S. economy added 178,000 jobs in November and unemployment dropped from 4.9 percent to 4.6 percent.  This is the lowest rates since August 2007.  November was the 74th consecutive month American added jobs. Wages also rose 2.5 percent.
  • December 13 and 14 – Meeting of the Federal Reserve. They raised their benchmark interest rate by .25 percentage points.  This was the second time this year, and only the second time in the past ten years, that interest rates have risen.  The Federal Reserve indicated that consumers should expect interest rates to rise three more times in 2017.
  • December 26 – Stock Market closed because of the Christmas holiday

Resources: / / MSN Money / Market Watch / YahooFinance / Bloomberg / Reuters and other public news sources

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