Weekly Economic Update: November 26, 2018

The Markets (as of market close November 23, 2018)

Trading volume may have been slower than usual during the Thanksgiving holiday week, but that didn’t stop stocks from moving downward. Tumbling oil prices, which fell to their lowest levels in over a year, pulled energy shares downward and raised fears of an economic slowdown. All major benchmark indexes fell sharply last week, headed by the Dow, followed closely by the Nasdaq. As stocks regularly hit new highs earlier in the year, pushing values higher than their 2017 closing marks, all of those gains have frittered away these past few months. Of the indexes listed here, only the Nasdaq is still ahead of its 2017 year-end price — but only barely. Each of the other indexes have fallen notably below last year’s respective values.

As we have mentioned in other BWFA reports, these market downturns are normal, regular, and healthy, shorter term occurrences, which exist over the course of long term successful investing. We discourage our clients from reacting to these downturns by exiting the stock market, as this will cause long term purchasing power risk and disrupt the optimization of portfolio results.


  • The pace of home building picked up in October, but applications for building permits and home completions each fell below their respective September rates.
  • For the first time in seven months, sales of existing homes expanded.
  • New orders for durable goods fell for the third time in the last four months in October.


The last week of the month offers several important economic reports, including the second report on gross domestic product for the third quarter. The initial report showed the economy grew at an annual rate of 3.5%. With consumer spending continuing to show strength, the GDP is not expected to vary significantly from last month’s growth rate.