Weekly Economic Update 2-19-19

Stocks extended their streak last week, as each of the benchmark indexes listed here posted gains of at least 2.0%. Positive developments in the trade talks between the United States and China, coupled with avoidance of another government shutdown, gave investors the confidence to continue trading. Robust market gains came despite weak retail sales numbers for January. Oil prices climbed over $55 per barrel for the first time in many weeks as OPEC and Russia agreed to cut production. Small caps led the way last week as the Russell 2000 gained over 4.0%. The Dow registered its eighth consecutive week of gains and is now almost 11.0% ahead of its December closing value.