The major averages drifted lower on Monday morning following a second-straight down week for the broader market.
“Our main message to investors is to be cautious,” James Demmert, CIO at Main Street Research, said. “The Fed is trying to engineer a soft economic landing that in our view has a high likelihood of failing and causing a recession in 2023. The Fed would like inflation to settle at 2% and it’s hard to imagine that happening without a recession and much higher unemployment, as the current rate of inflation is still way above that 2% target. Stock indexes are vulnerable at current levels.”
On the economic front, the NAHB housing market index (out shortly after the start of trading) kicks off a big week for housing data. Economists expect the index to tick up to 34 for December.
“Housing is one of the more interest rate sensitive parts of the US economy, and Fed Chair Powell’s relentless cry of ‘hike, hike, hike’ has not helped the sector,” UBS’ Paul Donovan wrote. “This is not 2008—the cash-out mortgage refinance pattern has not been repeated, so spending power of existing homeowners is not affected. The construction sector, and those employed in construction, are hit.”
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