Relations between the U.S. and Europe may become more strained over the summer as the administration weighs new tariffs on $3.1 billion of exports from France, Germany, Spain and the U.K. The move is part of the U.S. response to the most recent ruling in the very long-running fight at the World Trade Organization on aircraft subsidies. EU Trade Commissioner Phil Hogan recently told ministers in the bloc that the U.S. had stepped back from settlement talks, adding that the EU would have little choice but to impose its own sanctions in the absence of further discussions. (Bloomberg)
Companies shoring up cash to survive the global pandemic raised funds in the U.S. high-yield market at the fastest monthly pace ever. Junk issuers have already sold $46.7 billion of bonds in June, surpassing the prior monthly record of $46.4 billion in September 2013. Companies have rushed to build cash war chests to see them through the disruption amid the economic slump caused by the pandemic, which triggered a slew of bankruptcies. The Federal Reserve plans to purchase some types of high-yield bonds to boost liquidity spurred by record demand from investors. (FT)
Year to date, the Big 5 tech giants have outperformed the S&P 500's decline of 3.5%. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is the leader, up 50%, while Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is ahead by 29%, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is 26% higher, Facebook (FB) is up 19% and Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) has climbed 10%. Among the fundamental arguments for the rise has been how these major tech names are insulated from the stay-at-home economic effects. (SA)
With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Josh Fenili.