Notes Along the Path: Market Update for Week 27

Gordon Achtermann |

Market Recap


The S&P 500 index started the second half of 2024 with a 2% weekly gain to a record close, led by advances in the communication services, technology, and consumer discretionary sectors.

The market benchmark ended the week at 5,567.19 after reaching a record intraday high Friday at 5,570.33, topping the prior all-time highs on Wednesday.

The rally to the records marked the start of a new month, quarter, and half in just four sessions this week, with the US stock market closed Thursday for Independence Day. The index gained 14.5% in the first half of 2024 and has delivered a total return (including dividends) of 17.69% as of today's close. 

Labor Department data on Friday showed nonfarm payrolls rose by 206,000 last month, surpassing the 190,000 increase expected in a survey compiled by Bloomberg. Prior job gains were revised down by 54,000 for May and by 57,000 for April. The unemployment rate increased to 4.1% in June from 4% in May, faster than the 4% rate expected.

Investors speculate the data may spur the Federal Reserve's policy-setting committee to cut interest rates later this year.

By sectors, communication services, and technology led the weekly advance, up about 3.9% each, followed by a 3.8% climb in consumer discretionary. Consumer staples, financials, and utilities also rose.

In communication services, shares of Paramount Global (PARA) climbed 14% this week. Bloomberg reported the company is in exclusive negotiations to sell its Black Entertainment Television network for $1.6 billion to $1.7 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Apple (AAPL) shares led the rally in the technology sector, climbing 7.5% following an Oppenheimer report late last week that said the consumer technology company's move to incorporate artificial intelligence in the iPhone, iPad, and Mac is likely to fuel anticipated revenue and earnings growth.

In consumer discretionary, Tesla (TSLA) shares jumped 27% this week after stronger-than-expected second-quarter deliveries, which Wedbush Securities said indicated the worst is over for the electric vehicle maker.

The energy sector fell 1.3%, followed by a 1% drop in health care and a 0.6% decline in industrials. Materials and real estate also eased.

Decliners in the energy sector included APA (APA), which fell 2.9% this week as analysts at Goldman Sachs and UBS trimmed their price targets on the stock.


Stocks YTD performance by sector and style box category


Up Next

Economic data expected next week include the consumer price index and producer price index for June. Both inflation readings are likely to be closely watched as investors try to predict the Fed's next moves.


Stay the course!


All the Best,

Gordon Achtermann, CFP®