The past week was full of earnings data, economic data, and commentary from two major central banks, but the market shrugged off the busy event calendar, remaining near record levels.
Most notably, the Federal Open Market Committee concluded its latest two-day meeting on Wednesday. The central bank maintained its policy stance and gave little indication that a rate hike could be announced at the next policy meeting in May.
The combination of solid job growth and lackluster wage growth was welcomed by the stock market, considering it did not foreshadow an inflationary spike that would prompt a hawkish response from the Fed.
Rate hike expectations saw a moderate downtick. On Friday afternoon, the fed funds futures market pointed to a 63.5% implied likelihood of a June hike, down from last week’s 69.2%.
On the earnings front, investors received a set of results from heavyweights like Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB), Visa (V), UPS (UPS), and others. Amazon and UPS missed estimates while Apple, Facebook, and Visa surpassed expectations. However, it is worth noting that while Apple reported above-consensus results, the company faced reduced competition during the quarter after the recall of Samsung’s Note 7 in early October.