Stock Market Hovers Near Record Levels as Busy Week Begins

Stocks are hovering near record levels as the new week begins with several key economic reports on the horizon, including Friday’s monthly jobs market survey by the government. The S&P 500 edged up 0.1% early Monday, following a strong performance last month that saw it reach an all-time high. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.1%, while the Nasdaq composite rose 0.3%. AT&T faced pressure after sensitive information for millions of its customers was discovered on the “dark web.” Treasury yields remained stable in the bond market, while European markets were closed for a holiday.

Looking ahead, this week’s economic reports include trade data, jobless claims, vehicle sales, and the government’s comprehensive March jobs report. The has been on a positive trajectory since late October, with the S&P 500 notching its fifth straight winning month. This bullish trend has been supported by a resilient U.S. economy, despite higher interest rates aimed at curbing inflation.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell recently reiterated the central bank’s intention to cut interest rates this year, but emphasized that such moves would depend on inflation trends aligning with the Fed’s 2% target. Powell is scheduled to speak again on Wednesday at Stanford University.

In corporate news, UPS shares rose 2% after announcing a significant expansion of its partnership with the United States Postal Service. FedEx, UPS’s main competitor, saw its shares fall 1.9% before the bell on Monday.

In Asian markets, Shanghai gained 1% following positive manufacturing data from China. Sydney and Hong Kong were closed for the Easter Monday holiday. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 fell 1.4% after a showed a decline in sentiment among large manufacturers.

Overall, global markets are navigating a mix of economic data and corporate news, with investors closely monitoring developments for further market direction.