Major Markets

The Major Markets ended the week largely in the red as only the Dow Jones managed to squeak by with a small gain of 0.1%.
The Nasdaq saw the greatest losses on the week as it gave back 2.65%. This was in large part due to the drop in the Information Technology sector. In fact, most sectors reflected losses as Energy, Financials, and Materials were the only sectors to end in the green for the week.


Energy dominated the news last week in large part due to the surprise OPEC deal announced on Wednesday to reduce production among the nations. This comes at a record high OPEC Crude Oil supply and is the first reduction since    2008. However, some analysts still question whether or not the deal will really work.
The crude oil market rallied substantially in response. The S&P Crude Oil Index closed the week with a gain of 12.21%.

Meanwhile, Friday’s Baker Hughes Rig count continued to report more rigs coming back online as another 30 rigs were reported active last week bringing the North American Total to 797, of which 597 are in the US.

Employment Situation

The Employment Situation Report was also released on Friday with mixed results. The Nonfarm payrolls reflected an additional 178,000 jobs had been added in November, exceeding estimates of 170,000. However, October estimates were revised down from 161,000 down to 142,000.
The Unemployment Rate fell from 4.9% down to 4.6%. This surpassed expectations that the rate would remain unchanged for the month. However, the workforce participation rate also dropped a tenth of a percent as the level fell to 62.7% from October’s 62.8% reading.


Lastly, over the weekend elections in Europe caused uncertainties ahead of Monday’s open. The results of the votes in Austria and Italy cast further doubt of the EU going into next year. Alexander Van der Bellen’s win was narrow and showed that a massive nationalistic focus hasn’t fully been adopted by every country.
However, Italy’s landslide “No” vote led to the resignation of Matteo Renzi’s administration. The massive vote against a constitutional referendum and additional central government didn’t directly lead to a governmental change like June’s Brexit vote. However, much like David Cameron’s decision to resign based on the vote outcome, Renzi’s threat to resign if he was defeated came to fruition as 60% of the voters voted in opposition of the referendum.
And as the Guardian highlighted, of these members of the G5 summit in Hanover this past April, only Angela Merkel remains in power as we go into 2017.

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