April 26th 2023, 1:56:07 pm

(about a month ago)

Stocks surge in US and Canada

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An eventful week ranging from a slower rate hike by US Federal Reserve to better-than-expected earnings reports from US major companies led to higher stock prices and pushed S&P 500 to the highest level in five months. S&P 500 and Nasdaq added 8.9% and 16.6% and the Canadian benchmark has advanced 7% year to date.

Bank of Canada increased rates by 0.25% in their last meeting to 4.5% and called it the end of the rate hike cycle for now as inflation showing signs of cooling down in North America. US Federal Reserve also hiked the rates by another 0.25% to 4.75% which was less than market expectations and received as a positive sign by markets. The officials however mentioned that there will be more increases coming. Meanwhile, US mortgage rates have fallen to 5% as a sign of borrowing costs cooling down.

US companies also continued reporting their fourth-quarter earnings and mega names like Meta reported much better earnings and share buybacks which pushed the price 25% higher on Thursday. Meanwhile, Amazon, Apple, and Alphabet missed their reports but their guidance for next year was not disappointing. At the same time, giant energy companies including Exxon, Chevron, and European BP reporting record-high earnings and unprecedented levels of share buybacks.