The Major Markets
The S&P 500 saw the first real weekly decline, dropping 1.2%, after spending the last two weeks clinging to the 2100 level. The technology heavy NASDAQ fell significantly this week with stocks like Google Alphabet and Apple seeing some of the largest declines.
Microsoft stunned the market as they announced the plan to acquire LinkedIn for $196 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at around $26.2 billion.
The week was dominated by central banks as the (June 14 - 15th), Bank of Japan (June 16th), Bank of England (June 16th), and Swiss National Bank (June 16th) all held their policy meetings this past week. All four banks kept interest rates unchanged, with the impending BREXIT vote mentioned multiple times as a source of concern.
The tone around the June 23rd BREXIT vote shifted last week as the world was shocked to hear the news out of London that Jo Cox who was a British Labour Party member of parliament, wife and mother of two, and an advocate for the BREMAIN camp was shot and stabbed to her death.
This event caused both sides to temporarily suspend their campaigning a week ahead of an already uncertain referendum outcome.
Like Alice going through the looking glass, investors witnessed Germany join Switzerland and Japan in the negative interest rate territory last week.
The 10-year German Bund reached negative territory for the first time ever on Tuesday before it managed to crawl back into positive territory by Friday’s close.
This pales in comparison to the Swiss bonds. The Swiss yield curve has largely been sitting in negative territory for some time, but Thursday’s drop in the 30-year Bond yield put the entire curve in negative territory before climbing back positive by Friday’s close. This was the longest maturity bond to go into negative territory yet.
With these negative yields, we are now seeing an investment world where people are willing to forgo the pursuit of gains and disregard possible inflation in order to pay the government to hold their money.
On Friday, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said that he believes only one rate hike will be warranted through 2018. This is a stark contrast to the multiple rate-hikes scenario that he had supported as recently as mid-January.
Wrapping up this weekend is Father’s Day. It seems like Father’s don’t get as much honor as they once did in our society. Whether your father is still here, making an impact on your life or if he has since passed or even if you never really knew your father, make it a point this week to think of all the dads still out there trying to support their families. Give them a word of encouragement. We would like to say a thank you to all the men in the world who work hard to raise the next generation properly.