Economist's Insights

Yesterday’s Trading – Equities Extended Recovery Despite Rates Holding Higher

Feb 15, 2018

Early equity strength looked as if it may prove to be a head fake as an opening jump slowly dissipated and the major indices turned negative around 10 a.m. CT. However, the time spent in negative territory was brief as stocks quickly reversed, climbed for the remainder of the day, and closed near their session highs. The Dow gained 1.2% and, through Thursday’s close, was up 4.2% on the week and on pace for its best week since November 2016.

This week’s strength comes after the index lost more than 9% over the last two weeks. For some perspective, that last stronger week in November 2016 followed just a 2.6% drop in the two weeks prior. The S&P 500 also rose 1.2% on Thursday to take its total weekly tally to 4.2% which would be its best since January 2013. The S&P fell 8.8% over the last two week’s compared with just a 0.8% decline in the two weeks preceding the January 2013 week. The morning weakness pulled Treasury yields off of new multi-year highs but as stocks recovered into the afternoon, so too did yields. The 2-year yield rose 2.1 bps to 2.18% while the 10-year yield added 0.7 bps to 2.91%. The Dollar’s year-long woes continued as the greenback weakened against all major currencies to a new 38-month low.