Wealth Management News

Wall Street got off to a fast start to begin 2024. Investors were encouraged by strength in the economy, the likelihood of interest rate cuts, possibly beginning in June, and opportunities in artificial intelligence. Each of the benchmark indexes listed here posted solid first-quarter gains led by the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq. Several indexes reached new highs throughout the quarter. The S&P 500 hit its first record high in two years late in January, leading to its best first-quarter performance since 2019. The Federal Reserve provided encouraging news following its meeting in March as it projected three interest rate cuts by the end of the year. Ten-year Treasury yields stayed around 4.20% for most of the quarter, up from 3.86% at the close of 2023. Roughly 76.0% of S&P 500 companies reported fourth-quarter corporate earnings that exceeded analysts' expectations. Some of the "Magnificent Seven" megacap stocks stumbled a bit in the first quarter. Nevertheless, they were responsible for nearly 40.0% of the S&P 500's year-to-date gain, which is down from over 60.0% last year. Ten of the 11 market sectors posted quarterly gains, with industrials, information technology, communication services, financials, and energy climbing more than 10.0%.

Read the full Quarterly Market Review newsletter.

Stocks ended February on a high note as each of the benchmark indexes listed here closed up. The Nasdaq and the S&P 500 notched all-time highs, as tech shares, particularly those linked to AI, helped drive stocks. Inflation data released at the end of the month, was in line with expectations, which also supported stocks. February's gains marked the fourth straight month of advances for the S&P 500, the Dow, and the Nasdaq. For the year, the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 have risen about 7.0%, while the small caps of the Russell 2000 recouped losses from January.

Read the full Monthly Market Insights newsletter.

Every year, the Internal Revenue Service announces cost-of-living adjustments that affect contribution limits for retirement plans and various tax deduction, exclusion, exemption, and threshold amounts. Here are a few of the key adjustments for 2024.

The year 2023 was dominated by inflation and the Federal Reserve's restrictive policy in response to it. The year began with inflation at about 6.5%, with the Fed raising interest rates despite fears of rising unemployment and an economic recession. But while the focus remained on inflation, several other events occurred during the year, including a political battle over the debt ceiling and a potential government shutdown; the collapse of several banks; labor strikes; and unrest in the Middle East.

Read the full Quarterly Market Insights newsletter.