A strong April employment report, an expanding economy, low interest rates, and low inflation have played a big role in 2019’s rally.
And, so has the belief the U.S. and China will agree to a new trade deal.
A new wrinkle
Impatient with backpedaling by China, President Trump surprised investors on Sunday when he tweeted he will impose new tariffs on Chinese goods on Friday.
- Previously, headlines had suggested a deal might be forthcoming this week
As the economic expansion approaches its 10th birthday in July (NBER), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics unwrapped an early present: a strong jobs report and the lowest unemployment rate in 50 years.
Nonfarm payrolls rose by a stronger-than-expected 263,000 in April, and the unemployment rate fell 0.2 percentage points to 3.6%. It’s the lowest reading since May 1969, when the jobless rate bottomed at 3.4% (St. Louis Federal Reserve).