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Hope you are all doing well. Earnings were in focus with the spotlight on the big tech stocks. Despite the high bar, companies have so far been able to rise to the occasion, helping the S&P 500 recover half of its April losses. The NASDAQ finished more than 4% higher for the week while the S&P 500 was up nearly 3%; the Dow lagged, posting a fractional gain. This weekend was the NFL draft, I broke down this week’s update using some of the worst draft takes of all time.

If Jimmy Clausen is not a successful quarterback in the NFL, I’m done. That’s it. I’m out. – Mel Kiper Jr.

Unlike Clausen in Carolina, inflation has been able to stick around. Ahead of a U.S. Federal Reserve meeting, a report released on Friday showed that the Fed’s preferred gauge for tracking inflation remained above policymakers’ 2.0% long-term target rate. The Personal Consumption Expenditures Price Index rose at a 2.8% annual rate in March excluding food and energy price. That is unchanged from February’s core inflation figure, and a tenth of a percentage point above what most economists had forecast. As a result yields of U.S. government bonds rose for the fourth week in a row, and the yield of the 2-year Treasury briefly eclipsed 5.00% on Thursday for the first time since last November, when the yield reached the highest level since 2006. The yield of the 10-year bond finished the week around 4.67%.

With Larry Shannon coming to our football team by the way, he’s probably a step faster than Randy Moss. – Jimmy Johnson

Maybe slower is OK. Shannon played two NFL games, Moss went on to be one of the greatest of all time. U.S. economic growth like Moss was a step slower but it remains in positive territory. This year’s first quarter didn’t keep pace with the fourth quarter’s robust 3.4% growth rate and it fell short of most economists’ forecasts. Many of those same economic experts also predicted a recession at the end of last year that didn’t happen. Our economy is still strong. The economy is showing tremendous resilience considering the still-elevated inflation. GDP grew at an annualized rate of 1.6% for the quarter, unemployment remains low and corporate earnings are strong.  Any dip in stocks should still be considered a buying opportunity.

Contact Laurel Wealth Solutions if you’d like to speak about your investments or your plan. You can also reach Stephen Caruso directly by clicking the calendar link below and schedule a phone or zoom appointment at any time. Effective May 1st in person appointments outside of the office or normal business hours will carry an additional fee of $75.