Stock Jitters Continue as September Wariness Looms
Stock jitters increase over the month of September. Investor nervousness sets in during the historically weak month for stocks.
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- Stocks around the world wobble as investors look for more reasons to increase their bets
- European markets open in the green on Friday, US futures hover mixed
US Stocks Slide Despite Strong Retail Sales Report
US stocks slipped on Thursday after a better-than-expected report on the retail sales numbers for August. European markets on Friday trade fairly to the upside following a winning day, while Asian shares gained with technology stocks rising for the first time in a week.
Wall Street’s blue-chip S&P500 and Dow Jones benchmarks finished Thursday’s market action in negative territory, both down about 0.2% on the day. The technology-centred Nasdaq Composite traded moderately higher and closed up by 0.1%. The moderate trading unfolded as the US Commerce Department showed US retail sales climbed 0.7% in August, compared with the prior month. The figures topped analysts’ estimates for a decline of 0.8%. Additionally, the initial jobless claims for the week ended Sept. 11 rose by 20,000 to 332,000, from a pandemic low of 312,000 a week earlier.
The “September Effect”
So far in September, stock performance has been dragging as market participants have been unable to sustain the lofty gains witnessed throughout the year. While most of the recent regular sessions have seen major averages dip in the red, losses across the board have not been sizeable.
The broad-based S&P500 index on Thursday logged its 20th straight day without a 1% move in either direction. This has been the benchmark’s longest such streak since January 2020.
The soft and risk-averse momentum in the current time of the year is no new for the market. September has been a historically weak period for stock market returns. The “September Effect”, as it has been called, refers to the statistics which show major averages in the US in many years fail to gain traction after the summer season ends.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average has struggled in September so much that this is the only month with a negative return over the last 100 years.
Friday’s Market Moves
Meanwhile, in European markets on Friday, stocks in the old continent pushed higher on Thursday with the pan-continental Stoxx 600 index gaining 0.44%. Major averages finished in the green. Spain’s IBEX35 rose 1.14%, followed by France’s CAC40, up 0.59%. Germany’s DAX and the FTSE100 in London closed up 0.23%, and 0.16%, respectively.
On Friday, shares in Europe opened the day slightly higher as investors attempt to keep their optimism active for another day. The Stoxx 600 stock gauge gained about 0.6% in the initial moments of today’s session.
US futures mostly climbed ahead of the regular session on Friday. Futures contracts tied to the Dow and the S&P500 hovered in the green by 0.03% to 0.01%. Nasdaq futures were flat.
The price of bitcoin remains pinned near $48,000 as crypto enthusiasts await the next price catalyst that would shoot the leading token above the $50,000 milestone.
Italy to Require Green Pass
In Italy, Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s government announced Thursday that the country will be requiring workers, including those who are self-employed, to have the so-called green pass certificate. This would show whether a person has been vaccinated, has recently recovered from the coronavirus, or has been freshly tested negative for Covid-19.
Making the green pass compulsory for public and private sector workers has been one of the strictest measures imposed in Europe to fight the pandemic.