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The NASDAQ ended with nearly a 5.5% loss.

Selling Pressure reappeared last week as the hope of having reached a peak inflation level was suddenly shattered. On Tuesday, the Consumer Price Index was widely expected to reflect a month-over-month decline of -0.1%. However, when the report hit the streets, the August reading saw a 0.1% increase. As a result, the year-over-year figure came in much higher than the 8.0% analysts expected with the headline 8.3%. Moreover, the Core CPI, a reading that excludes food and energy prices, was anticipated to come in at 0.3%. Instead, the month-over-month change came back double estimates with an August increase of 0.6%. This news weighed heavily on the markets. The week opened with a solid gain on Monday as it continued the recovery from the tale end of last week. But Tuesday’s post CPI report loss exceeded 4%. This marked the largest daily drop since June of 2020. While Wednesday managed to close positive, the bounce was short-lived as both Thursday and Friday closed 1.13% and 0.72% lower respectively. By the end of the week, the Major Markets all ended deeply lower with the NASDAQ posting a nearly 5.5% loss. At Leap Wealth, we are here to help you manage through the economic and political noise to stay on track. Contact us today to learn more.

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Natural Gas dropped nearly nine percentage

After three consecutive weeks of losses, the S&P 500 managed to break its losing streak with the largest weekly gain since the end of July. Despite Labor Day shortening the trading week, with the 7th negative of the prior 10 trading days, the S&P 500 managed to record a string of positive sessions. This sudden bounce managed to provide support to the market as it broke back above the 50-day moving average. The greatest weekly gains across the Major Markets were seen in the Nasdaq as it once again managed to set the pace when the domestic market ended in positive territory. Emerging Markets was the lone holdout in negative territory as even the developed international market managed to also log a welcome, positive return. The week was filled with various forms of geopolitical and economic headlines that the market participants largely appeared to ignore. The long-holiday weekend began with the news that Russia would continue to keep the Nord Stream 1 pipeline offline for the foreseeable future given the economic sanctions against the country for invading Ukraine. Despite this significant geopolitical action, the Energy segment of the commodity market fell last week as the GSCI Crude Oil Index ended effectively flat while Natural Gas dropped nearly nine percentage points week-over-week. This week, market participants will largely be focused on the August Consumer Price Index. Expectations are for a reduction in the year-over-year reading from 8.5% down to 8.0%. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you. www.leapwealth.com

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Crude Oil and Natural Gas fell 6.60%

For the third week in a row, the domestic Major Market indices ended lower. The greatest losses were seen in the Nasdaq as it fell over four percentage points. Last week also concluded the month of August which, ended the month lower. For the S&P 500, the monthly performance came down to the last four trading day’s declines as the index gave up a total 5.8% in the final days of the month. On Friday, the BLS Employment Report came in with a reading of 315,000 new jobs for the month of August, slightly below expectations of 318,000. However, what caught analysts by surprise was the increase in the unemployment rate from 3.5% to 3.7% as the participation rate also increased, matching the post-covid high from March of this year. This helped lift the overall market Friday, as market participants questioned whether the Fed would increase the Fed Funds rate by another 75 basis points or with the more dovish and accommodative 50 basis points. However, this optimism fell midday as reports that Gazprom would be shutting off the Nord Stream 1 pipeline with no timeline for its reopening. The shutoff was initially reported to be due to a leak that had been detected. Yet, over the weekend, Moscow announced that the shutdown would remain indefinitely following the maintenance work. Crude Oil and Natural Gas fell 6.60% and 5.15% respectively. At Leap Wealth, we are here to help you manage through the economic and political noise to stay on track. Contact us today to learn more.

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Crude Oil Traded at $94 dollars

The S&P 500 began the week with the largest daily loss since June 28th which was followed by lackluster trading midweek ahead of Friday’s main event. However, in Powell’s relatively brief prepared comments, he said: restoring price stability will take some time and requires using our tools forcefully to bring demand and supply into better balance. Reducing inflation is likely to require a sustained period of below-trend growth. Moreover, there will very likely be some softening of labor market conditions. While higher interest rates, slower growth, and softer labor market conditions will bring down inflation, they will also bring some pain to households and businesses. These are the unfortunate costs of reducing inflation but a failure to restore price stability would mean far greater pain. Monday’s dour returns only served as a prelude to Friday’s activity. The markets traded sharply lower on this news with the S&P 500 ending down 3.37% for the day and marking the largest loss since June 13th. Not surprisingly, these combined daily gains and losses caused the weekly performance to also see the greatest pullback since mid-June. Large Cap Growth stocks saw the greatest pullback from a capitalization perspective. However, the over or underperformance is relative as the Mid Cap Value index also saw a nearly three percentage point loss as it sat as the best of the worst. At the sector level, Energy was the lone positive performer once again after weeks of mixed performance. Energy’s gains were fueled by a rebound in the price of Crude Oil as the commodity futures closed out the week trading back as high as $94 dollars while Natural Gas continued to trade around both the year-to-date and 14-year high. For Treasuries, the week’s events only further placed pressure on the longer end of the yield curve. While long-term interest rates remined relatively flat, the shorter end of the curve rose as bond traders reassessed the forward-looking interest rate environment and the greater economic future after the Jackson Hole meeting. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you. www.leapwealth.com

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The sentiment was echoed Tuesday as the housing starts also fell short of estimates

After four consecutive weeks of gains the S&P 500 saw its first weekly loss in a month. Unfortunately, this index wasn't the only one of the major markets that saw a pullback last week as all five of the indices ended lower. For the S&P 500 the 1.2% weekly decline was a result of Friday's 1.29% decline. Friday's activity was noteworthy as the 19th marked the monthly option expiration for August. For technical analysts this coincided with the index testing its 200-day moving average for the first time since April. The index came within 23 points of the moving average at close Tuesday before retreating from it Wednesday. But last week's news was an exclusively focused on the technical the week opened with the Empire State Manufacturing Index, which fell unexpectedly. The sentiment was echoed Tuesday as the housing starts also fell short of estimates. Once these retail sales also missed expectations as the reading came in essentially flat month over month. This had been seen in several high-profile earnings releases midweek as retailers like Target, Walmart and Kohl's reported with mixed quarterly results. This mixed Outlook could be seen at the sector level as consumer discretionary fell over a percent and a half while Consumer Staples managed to rise nearly two percent. In the end only three of the 11 sectors managed to climb higher. Finally, treasury saw interest rates rise slightly in the longer-term durations with a 20-year yield moving slightly out of inversion relative to the shorter-term durations. This increase in yields pulled back on the greater Bond indices as the Bloomberg Barclays us aggregate Bond index gave back roughly another percentage point for the week. At Leap Wealth, we are here to help you manage through the economic and political noise to stay on track. Contact us today to learn more.

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The Major Markets continued their recovery from the second quarter lows

The Major Markets continued their recovery from the second quarter lows. Four of the five indices closed higher with only a slight loss in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. For the third week in a row, the Nasdaq held the top spot as Information Technology led the recovery movement. IT marked the largest gains of the 11 sectors. What was also apparent was the drop in Energy as the segment gave back a significant amount of its impressive year to date gains. Bond Indices fell with the Bloomberg Barclays US Aggregate Bond Index falling -1.04% last week. Crude Oil prices drove the drop in the Energy Sector. The S&P GSCI Crude Oil Index fell 9.7% week over week as the commodity continued to flush out more of the gains from the 1st half of the year. As of Sunday, the WTI Futures traded back below Pre-Ukrainian Invasion levels, on par with the close of January of this year. However, prices remain 17.21% higher than the end of last year and 32.6% higher than last summer. In economic news, possibly the most awaited headline item was Friday’s employment report, which estimates an expected monthly increase of 258,000 jobs. Instead, 528,000 new jobs were added in July, blowing out most estimates. This headline reading created mixed results for the markets. In fact, the S&P 500 only managed to close one day higher last week, and it wasn’t Friday. At Leap Wealth, we are here to guide our clients through all the markets' turmoil, both short and long term. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you. www.leapwealth.com