With politics once again dominating the news cycle, stocks experienced a second day in a row of low volatility and quiet participation. It appears in addition to being distracted by the “incredible” political theatre that we saw today, traders were in a holding pattern before the release of the non-farm payroll number tomorrow morning.
By the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 44 points to finish the day at 16,943. The S&P 500 was up 6 points to close at 1,993. Gold was up $23 to trade at $1,264 per ounce, while oil was up a fraction to trade at $34.69 per barrel WTI.
As mentioned, we get the all-important non-farm payroll number tomorrow and the consensus guesstimate is that 190,000 new jobs were created in February. The expectations are that the unemployment number will remain the same at 4.9%, and we’ll see if average hourly earnings continue to inch higher. We’ll let you know how it plays out and how the first week of March trading ends.
Have a nice evening everyone.