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Yesterday was a record-breaking day
This is NP/NR Daily, meant to keep you up to date on what’s happening in the markets and economy, and what you can do about it — if anything.
Is it Friday? Does it matter?
The unemployment picture is bleak
Yesterday we got the first unemployment numbers since state governments have started issue stay-home orders and shutting down businesses. And it was bad — really bad. Historically bad.
This week there were almost 3.3 million unemployment claims, up from around 250,000 last week. To put things in perspective, experts were only anticipating 1.5 million — this is more than twice what was expected. And the previous record was less than 700,000, which occurred in March 1982. Even during the Great Recession, weekly unemployment claims peaked at 665,000.
So, that 3.3 million figure is not only astronomical, it’s historically unprecedented. Nothing we’ve ever seen even comes close to this. And it’s probably going to get worse. If there’s one piece of good news, though, it’s that a lot of these jobs will likely come back once people are allowed to leave their homes again. But for now? You’re seeing history play out.
Wall Street didn’t seem to care, however
Despite the labor market getting absolutely nuked, the stock market had another monster day. The third monster day, in fact, in as many days. The Dow has actually gained 20% since bottoming-out and is no longer in a bear market.
So, to recap, we saw an absolutely devastating jobs report, and Wall Street went wild. It’s hard to say why, exactly. But this sort of detachment from reality has been something of the norm in the markets for the past few years.
Not that the markets going up is a bad thing — it’s a positive, after all — but it can be strange to try and wrestle with the bad and good news in one day. We’ll see if the markets can keep it up.
The stimulus looks like it’s finally going to pass
Everybody’s been waiting for the stimulus bill to pass, and on Friday, the House should pass it and send it to the President’s desk. It’ll expand unemployment benefits, dish out $1,200 stimulus checks (some more, some less), and give a ton of money to troubled businesses.
Finally, cruise ship companies are apparently salty that they’re being left out of the bailout funds attached to the stimulus bill, expected to pass the House today. That’s because none of them are actually American companies — they’re all headquartered in countries like Liberia and Panama in order to avoid taxes.
But now, they’re looking for a taxpayer handout. It’s not good, of course, that they could go out of business, but hopefully, some other companies will take note of what happens when you leave the Fly Fifty in a tax avoidance ploy. You hear that, Burger King?
Until next week,