Data & Insight

Living in a Material World

Let's dive right into this week's market moves.
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Living in a Material World

Interest Rates: The Fed kept rates on hold this week at 5.25% – 5.5%, but officials signaled in their latest projections that they see 0.75 percentage point worth of cuts in 2024.

Bull Market and Investor Optimism:
The stock market has entered a vigorous bull market phase, reminiscent of the 1990s, with stocks surging over 30% in the last 12 months. 

Edward Jones / FactSet

Beating Records: The S&P 500 closed at an all-time high on Wednesday, up more than 9% so far this year.

Edward Jones / FactSet

Optimistic Outlook: Compared to last year, there has been a significant uptick in capital spending and more money is going into housing. These are all good signs that could help balance out any slowdown we might see in how much people are spending. We're not out of the woods with the high interest rates the Fed's been setting, but if inflation keeps cooling off, we might see some rate cuts before the year ends. 

Steady As She Goes:
Throughout 2023, the economy showed its strength consistently, with real GDP growth cruising over 2% every quarter. 

Edward Jones / St. Louis Fed.

Growth and Labor: The U.S. economy bounced back impressively in the latter half of 2023, with a strong 4% average quarterly GDP growth shaking off earlier recession worries. Despite a robust job market, there's a hint of cooling with a slight rise in unemployment, fewer job openings, and slower wage growth over the past year.

Cox Automotive
Cox Automotive

Plenty of Stock: After a dip in availability last year due primarily to the UAW strike, both new and used inventory are finally back up by 52% and 9% respectively YOY. 

Cox Automotive

Record EV Sales: In 2023, a record 1.2M U.S. consumers bought electric vehicles, pushing the EV market share to 7.6%, up from 5.9% the previous year.

2024 Outlook: Dubbed the "Year of More" for EVs by Cox Automotive, 2024 is anticipated to see an increase in EV sales surpassing the 1-million-unit mark set last year. 

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