Forefront’s Market Notes


Investor enthusiasm for stocks remained strong last week, buoyed by declining bond yields in a holiday-abbreviated trading week.


The Dow Jones Industrial Average picked up 1.27%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 1.00%. The Nasdaq Composite index rose 0.89% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, was flat (+0.03%).1,2,3



Falling Yields Lift Stocks

The stock market continued to look toward the bond market for direction, responding positively to bond yields that fell steadily for much of the week. A successful 20-year Treasury notes auction on Monday triggered a decline in bond yields. The release of the minutes from the Fed’s last meeting buoyed investor optimism that the potential for further rate hikes was diminishing.


Investor sentiment was also lifted by the earnings results from a leading mega-cap, AI-enable chipmaker that topped analysts’ expectations, bolstering the narrative of AI’s potential to help corporate profits. Despite a higher turn in bond yields on the final half-day of trading, stocks retained the week’s gains.


Fed Minutes

Minutes from the October 31–November 1 meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee were released last week, providing insight into its decision not to raise rates and its thinking on the future direction of interest rates.


The minutes reflected concerns by committee members that inflation remained stubborn and may move higher. The minutes also reaffirmed the messaging of many Fed officials, including Fed Chair Powell, that monetary policy must remain restrictive until they are convinced inflation will be on track for the Fed’s two percent target. They further said that future rate decisions will be based on fresh economic data, offering no indication that a rate cut was forthcoming, as many analysts are increasingly anticipating for 2024.


Start a New Business Off on the Right Foot

Starting a new business? There are some important tax tips to know to set yourself up for success. Here are some tips that the IRS shares for new business owners:


Choose the right business structure: The form of business determines which income tax return a business taxpayer needs to file. The most common business structures are a sole proprietorship, a partnership, a corporation, an S corporation, and an LLC.


Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN): An EIN is used to identify a business. Most businesses need an EIN.


*This information is not intended to substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.

Tip adapted from IRS.gov4


Footnotes and Sources

1. The Wall Street Journal, November 24, 2023.

2. The Wall Street Journal, November 24, 2023.

3. The Wall Street Journal, November 24, 2023.

4., July 19, 2023



Stock market calendar this week:

10:00 AM New home sales
9:00 AM S&P Case-Shiller home price index (20 cities)
10:00 AM Consumer confidence
10:00 AM Fed Gov. Christopher Waller speaks
10:00 AM Chicago Fed President Austan Goolsbee speaks
10:45 AM Fed Governor Michelle Bowman speaks
1:05 PM Fed Governor Michael Barr speaks
3:30 PM Fed Governor Michael Barr speaks
8:30 AM GDP (first revision)
8:30 AM Advanced U.S. trade balance in goods
1:45 PM Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester speaks
2:00 PM Fed Beige Book
8:30 AM Initial jobless claims
8:30 AM Personal income (nominal)
8:30 AM Personal spending (nominal)
8:30 AM PCE index
8:30 AM Core PCE index
8:30 AM PCE (year-over-year)
8:30 AM Core PCE (year-over-year)
9:05 AM New York Fed President John Williams speaks
9:45 AM Chicago Business Barometer (PMI)
10:00 AM Pending home sales
3:00 AM Fed Governor Michael Barr speaks
10:00 AM ISM manufacturing
10:00 AM Construction spending
10:00 AM Chicago Fed President Austan Goolsbee speaks
11:00 AM Fed Chair Jerome Powell speaks
2:00 PM Fed Chair Jerome Powell and Fed Governor Lisa Cook talk to local leaders in Atlanta
TBA Auto sales

Most anticipated earnings for this week:


Did you miss our blog last week?

Hobby Tax Tips


About Amit: I am a first generation American, the son of a working-class Indian family, and I lived through my parents’ struggle to find their place in this country, to put down roots that would sustain them as well as their children in a new land. As they encouraged me to excel in school and fostered my hobbies and interests, I was keenly aware of the dynamic between them. I understood that there was a difference between where they came from individually and where we were now. They worked hard in their individual capacities, but they weren’t always on the same page about financial issues – and that can make or break a family’s future. I didn’t know it at the time, but this laid the groundwork for my passion towards financial services and helping families succeed.