The stock market has “some things going for it right now,” says a recent article in The Wall Street Journal, citing rising corporate earnings and economic growth as contributing factors. However, it adds, “what they hadn’t anticipated were the other risks that would weigh on stocks,” such as an aggressive Fed, slowing growth overseas and looming trade conflicts.
Policy makers are leaning toward two more rate hikes this year, the article reports, and increasing inflation and a dropping unemployment rate will probably trigger more hikes next year. Economic growth forecasts for global economies have fallen since the beginning of this year, which has dampened demand growth at U.S. overseas operations. “Compounding the problem,” the article says, “stronger relative growth in the U.S. has pushed the dollar higher, lowering the dollar value of the goods and services that U.S. companies sell abroad.”
The article cites China as the “main focus of the administration’s escalating trade disputes and so far, its leaders are showing no sign of taking Mr. Trump’s actions lying down.”
Trade issues, the Fed’s actions and the weaker global outlook, the article concludes, have resulted in lower investor expectations. “The stock market’s ability to absorb body blows therefore looks more limited at a time when it looks like the punches will keep on coming.”