What's Next For Stocks After Fed Chair Powell Says Smaller Interest Rate Hikes Could Start In December?

Zinger Key Points
  • Analysts are projecting S&P 500 earnings will decline 2.1% year-over-year in the fourth quarter.
  • The University of Michigan releases its Consumer Sentiment Index reading on Friday.

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust SPY rallied this week following dovish commentary from the Federal Reserve chair, but the November jobs report revealed the U.S. labor market remains tight.

On Wednesday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said the central bank could begin moderating the pace of its interest rate hikes "as soon as the December meeting," which is scheduled for Dec. 14.

Investors cheered the possibility of a less aggressive Fed, sending the S&P 500 up 3% and the Nasdaq Composite up 4.4% on Wednesday.

Related Link: Stocks Rip Higher After Powell Says Fed Could Dial Back Interest Rate Hikes 'As Soon As The December Meeting'

On Friday, the Labor Department reported the U.S. economy added 263,000 jobs in November, beating economist estimates of 200,000 jobs. The unemployment rate remained steady at 3.7%, and hourly wages were up 5.1% from a year ago.

Tesla Inc TSLA CEO and Twitter owner Elon Musk visited Apple headquarters and met with Apple, Inc. AAPL CEO Tim Cook on Wednesday to resolve what Musk classified as a "misunderstanding" about Twitter potentially being removed from Apple's App Store. The meeting came after Musk went on a tweet storm earlier in the day accusing Apple of censoring its users and opposing free speech.

Related Link: Elon Musk Lashes Out At Apple In Tweetstorm Over Threat Of Twitter App Store Ban: 'Do They Hate Free Speech?'

On Monday, cryptocurrency lender BlockFi declared bankruptcy, becoming the latest victim of the 2022 crypto winter. In its bankruptcy filing, BlockFi noted that it had a $275-million outstanding loan to crypto exchange FTX, which itself filed for bankruptcy earlier in the month.

Xpeng Electrified: On Wednesday, Chinese electric vehicle company Xpeng Inc - ADR XPEV reported earnings and revenue misses in the third quarter, but its stock still rallied to finish the week higher by more than 67%.

In the week ahead, investors will get more quarterly reports from GameStop Corp. GME and Campbell Soup Company CPB on Wednesday and Chewy Inc CHWY and Docusign Inc DOCU on Thursday.

Analysts are projecting S&P 500 earnings will decline 2.1% year-over-year in the fourth quarter, according to FactSet.

Economic Numbers: Investors will get key economic updates on Monday when the Institute for Supply Management releases its November Services Purchasing Managers Index reading and on Friday when the University of Michigan releases its December Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index reading.

Photo via Shutterstock. 

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