Capital Markets | 4 min read

    Market Commentary: Week of July 1, 2024

    Interest rates were pushed higher by Friday to close 10-year Treasuries around the 4.39% level, up from the prior week’s close near 4.25%. Meaningful supply with the 2-year, 5-year, and 7-year auctions offered one potential opportunity for rates to drift upward, which was effectively accomplished by the end of the week. Initial Jobless Claims released on Thursday morning included a meaningful revision to the prior data to 239k, thus providing a brief respite from the higher move as data suggested employment challenges remain a hurdle for the economy. The two other most meaningful market-influencing events on the calendar included the Presidential Debate on Thursday evening and the release of Core PCE (the Fed’s preferred inflation measure) early Friday. The debate arguably increased the odds of a Trump victory, whereas it exposed some weaknesses for the Biden campaign. The constructive Core PCE data indicating further progress in the Fed’s inflation-fighting initiatives was initially met with a rally in rates. As the day progressed, however, rates demonstrated the most pronounced move of the week, rising from 4.26% after PCE to close at 4.39%. Month-end rebalancing, Fed-speak reiterating the continued need to be diligent in fighting inflation, forex concerns with a strong dollar, and concerns about the upcoming French election uncertainty all contributed to the weakness through the remainder of the day.

    This week, we are again faced with a holiday-interrupted trading environment with the July 4th holiday on Thursday, but an open market on Friday with Nonfarm payrolls is to be released at 8:30 in the morning. Consensus suggests a +188k increase in the payrolls data, representing a rather benign reading if it were to come close to the survey. If history is any guide, with an expected limited trader attendance on Friday, the market may have a more reactive response after having the chance to digest the data (and some hotdogs) once trading resumes on Monday. The chart below indicates that 10-year rates are firmly in the middle of the current downward-sloping trend channel (light blue) after breaking below the previous upward-sloping channel (red). Additionally, this places rates squarely in the middle of the nearest support and resistance levels. The next move outside the downward channel and/or the support/resistance levels should be closely watched. All things being equal, I continue to favor buying any move near the upper resistance with an expectation that the downward trend will remain intact.

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    Last week, SWBC client activity in the municipal market increased as rates drifted higher towards the end of the week. Buyers appear to be less willing to chase rates lower but were notably involved as rates backed up. This buying on weakness and indication of support adds a level of comfort to my expectation for an underlying layer of sponsorship to the broader market. This week, the municipal market will have a very limited supply as issuers typically take a breather on issuing new paper during holiday-shortened weeks. Continued need to reinvest redemption proceeds in July (the third highest redemption month of the year, behind June and August) suggests ongoing support for tax-exempt paper over the next several weeks.

    ImageAn index is unmanaged and not available for direct investment. Definitions sourced from Bloomberg.

    The Bloomberg Barclays Global Aggregate Negative Yielding Debt Market Value Index represents the portion of the Bloomberg Barclays Global Aggregate Index that measures the aggregate value of global debt with a negative yield. • The S&P 500® is widely regarded as the best single gauge of large-cap U.S. equities and serves as the foundation for a wide range of investment products. The index includes 500 leading companies and captures approximately 80% coverage of available market capitalization. • The NASDAQ Composite Index is a broad-based capitalization-weighted index of stocks in all three NASDAQ tiers: Global Select, Global Market and Capital Market. The index was developed with a base level of 100 as of February 5, 1971.• The Cboe Volatility Index® (VIX) is a calculation designed to produce a measure of constant, 30-day expected volatility of the US stock market, derived from real-time, mid-quote prices of weekly S&P 500® Index (SPX) call and put options with a range of 23 to 37 days to expiration.• The ICE BofA MOVE Index is a yield curve weighted index of the normalized implied volatility on 1-month Treasury options. It is the weighted average of implied volatilities on the CT2 (Current 2 Year Government Note), CT5 (Current 5 Year Government Note), CT10 (Current 10 Year Government Note), and CT30 (Current 30 Year Government Note), with weights 0.2/0.2/0.4/0.2 respectively.• The Markit CDX North America Investment Grade Index is composed of 125 equally weighted credit default swaps on investment grade entities, distributed among 6 sub-indices: High Volatility, Consumer, Energy, Financial, Industrial, and Technology, Media & Tele-communications. Markit CDX indices roll every 6 months in March & September. • The Markit CDX North America High Yield Index is composed of 100 non-investment grade entities, distributed among 2 sub-indices: B, BB. All entities are domiciled in North America. Markit CDX indices roll every 6 months in March & September. • The U.S. Dollar Index (USDX) indicates the general international value of the USD. The USDX does this by averaging the exchange rates between the USD and major world currencies. Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) US computes this by using the rates supplied by some 500 banks.

    Investing involves certain risks, including possible loss of principal. You should understand and carefully consider a strategy’s objectives, risks, fees, expenses, and other information before investing. The views expressed in this commentary are subject to change and are not intended to be a recommendation or investment advice. Such views do not take into account the individual financial circumstances or objectives of any investor that receives them. All indices are unmanaged and are not available for direct investment. Indices do not incur costs including the payment of transaction costs, fees, and other expenses. This information should not be considered a solicitation or an offer to provide any service in any jurisdiction where it would be unlawful to do so under the laws of that jurisdiction. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

    © 2021 SWBC. All rights reserved. Securities offered through SWBC Investment Services, LLC, a registered broker/dealer. Member FINRA & SIPC. Advisory services offered through SWBC Investment Company, a Registered Investment Advisor, registered as such with the US Securities & Exchange Commission. SWBC Investment Services, LLC is under separate ownership from any other named entity. SWBC Investment Services, LLC a division of SWBC, is a nationwide partnership of advisor.

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    Christopher Brigati

    Prior to joining SWBC, Brigati was Senior Vice President, Managing Director of Municipal Investments at Valley National Bank. With over 25 years of experience primarily in the municipal market, he is a recognized thought leader in the fixed-income markets and is a regular contributor with appearances on Bloomberg Television and Radio. He has authored numerous economic commentaries and his insights have been featured in leading financial media publications, including The Bond Buyer, The Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg. Brigati has also been an active participant with the Bond Dealers of America (BDA) trade association, advocating regulators and legislators on Capitol Hill on behalf of the broker-dealer community. Before joining Valley National Bank, he served as Managing Director and Head of Municipal Trading at Advisors Asset Management, Inc. (AAM). Before that, he had a long career at Morgan Stanley where he served as Managing Director and Head of Wealth Management Municipal Trading for eight years. Brigati holds a bachelor’s degree from The State University of New York at Albany School of Business. He is registered for Series 3, 4, 7, 24, 53, and 63.

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