The S&P 500 index fell 0.18% to close at 1,414 during a trading week shortened two days by Hurricane Sandy.
- With the trading week shortened by two days because of Hurricane Sandy, the S&P 500 index fell .18% to close at 1,414. Treasury bonds were mixed and gold declined.
- The overall market news was also mixed. The labor market demonstrated needed improvement, but the unemployment rate ticked up and personal spending increased and exceeded the growth in personal income, leading to a decline in the savings rate.
- Housing continues to be a bright spot and should help economic growth and lead to increased consumer confidence.
- Third-quarter earnings reports have showed earnings growth of essentially zero. Several companies exceeded expectations such as Ford Motor, MetLife and MasterCard, while others such as Avon Products, Chevron and Eaton disappointed.