Markets got off to a great start for the week despite continued trade tension and the U.S. and China assessing $34 billion in tariffs against each other on Friday. While stock trading volume was lower, the markets may have seen some investors start to turn their attention away from headline news and start to focus on company earnings. Third quarter reporting is about to ramp up and with earnings outpacing stock prices investors may be trying to get on the bandwagon. Industrial companies and banks were the biggest benefactors today, which left the Dow up 320 points for a closing value of 24,776. Utilities got whacked while gold and oil made modest gains.
Job growth for June exceeded expectations. Analysts were hoping for job growth of 200,000 but were expecting growth to be just short of that. In fact, job growth beat expectations as it was reported that it grew by 213,000 last month. The economy continues to look strong as people are truly getting to work. Social Security disability benefit applications are down, as well as people accepting food stamps. Wage growth continues to be a little modest but is still up 2.7% from a year ago.
Across the Atlantic, British cabinet members are quitting left and right. Brexit Secretary, David Davis, quit Sunday, and today British Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson followed suit. They believe the negotiations are leaving Britain too closely regulated by the EU, which seems fine with Prime Minister May as she did not support leaving the EU in the first place.