Investors continue to get comfort from a spate of reports, sending stocks and exchange traded funds (ETFs) higher – albeit slightly. Thank budget-stabilizing plans from Greece, non-manufacturing sector data and and a smaller-than-anticipated drop in job losses.
At last, something resembling a resolution has emerged out of Greece. The government gave the go-ahead to a round of tax increases and pay cuts for public employees as part of what’s being billed as an “austerity plan.” The moves are expected to generate $6.54 billion, on top of another $6.5 billion in cuts that have sparked unrest. The further cuts came at the behest of the European Union, which wanted Greece to do all it could before the body handed over a bailout. iShares MSCI EMU Index (NYSEArca: EZU) is up 2% this morning. [How to Sidestep Europe’s Ailing Countries.]
The U.S. services sector expanded in February at its fastest pace since 2007. The sector accounts for the majority of jobs in the United States, including retail, health care and financial services, and its health is considered a necessary ingredient for economic recovery. SPDRs (NYSEArca: SPY) are up about 0.6% so far this morning. [5 ETFs for the New Retail Climate.]
There were 20,000 jobs lost in the private sector last month, and believe it or not, that’s good news. The drop was less than expected, and losses are at their lowest level since 2006.
The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.