Global stocks continued to mount an impressive rally this week as optimism surrounding ceasefire talks between Russia and Ukraine helped bolster sentiment. On Tuesday, Moscow said it would “drastically reduce” military activity near the capital city of Kyiv while Ukrainian officials showed signs of a willingness to negotiate. After being down as much as 13% year-to-date, the S&P 500 is now within about 3.5% of all-time highs as of Wednesday morning. Still, concerns over the outlook for economic growth remain as certain portions of the U.S. yield curve remain inverted. Specifically, the yield on the 2-year Treasury note briefly eclipsed the yield on the 10-year Treasury note for the first time in more than two years. On the data front, the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) showed job openings declining modestly in February. Separately, the consumer confidence index edged up in March from a downwardly revised February level, as an increase in the current conditions component partially offset a decline in the expectations component. The labor differential, which measures the difference between the percentage of respondents saying jobs are plentiful and those saying jobs are hard to get, rose to an all-time high in March. For the rest of the week, Friday’s nonfarm payrolls and the unemployment rate will be in focus as investors assess the overall health of the economy amid surging energy prices. In addition, markets will get a glimpse at revised GDP numbers for the fourth quarter, as well as February’s inflation data on Thursday.
Source: GSAM, Daily Upside, JPM, FactSet
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