The Federal Reserve hiked rates on May 4 by a half-point. It was the first half-point hike since May 2000. This summer, the Fed plans two more half-point rate hikes, on June 15 and July 27. So this could be a long, hot summer for investors.
Reminiscent of the 1958 movie, “The Long, Hot Summer,” starring “newcomer” Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward, who were married for 50 years after making the movie, this summer of financial and economic news is going to be a drama. As the trailer said, “Not since Peyton Place has a story been told so boldly.” The questions that will slowly be answered this summer are big:
Can the Fed engineer a soft landing? Or will the Fed tighten too much and tip the economy into recession? And what will the Fed raise rates another half-point in September?
The stock market is not a fan of economic drama. As what may be a long, hot summer of 2022 got underway, the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index closed this Friday at 4,108.54.
The index lost -1.63% from Thursday and dropped -1.2% from last week’s closing price. The S&P 500 has gained +58.97% since the March 23, 2020, bear market low and is down -15.45% from its January 3rd all-time high.