On Wednesday, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell began his two-day testimony before Congress. He reinforced the current prevailing dovish sentiment by stating that the case for a looser monetary policy had strengthened. Powell also noted his concerns about Facebook’s new cryptocurrency, Libra – including the potential for illegal activities, weak consumer protection, and price instability. The week ended with rising concerns as Tropical Storm Barry threatens Louisiana. The storm, which will likely make landfall early Saturday morning, could elevate to hurricane status. However, officials are most worried about the heavy rains the storm will bring – especially after a year of record flooding.
The S&P 500 continued to set record highs at the end of the week after faltering Monday and Tuesday. The index broke above the $3,000 level intra-day for the first time on Wednesday and closed the day above $3,000 for the first time on Friday. Despite gains made by domestic large cap stocks, domestic small caps and international stocks closed the week slightly down. The 10-Year Treasury increased from below 2% to end the week at 2.12% as investors digested Powell’s testimony. Taxable bond funds fell slightly with the bounce in the longer term rates.
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