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US Stocks had their first down week in 3 week last week as investors are less optimistic about Congress passing another stimulus package before much of the Cares Act expires.


U.S. consumers grew more confident in the economy in late November and early December, with many expecting the economic conditions to improve when the country begins to exit from the coronavirus pandemic.  The University of Michigan said their index of consumer sentiment climbed to 81.4 in the two weeks ended Dec. 9, from 76.9 in November.

 

Oregon factories eliminated more than 16,000 jobs in the early weeks of the pandemic and there’s little sign those jobs are coming back.  Manufacturing is one of Oregon’s largest economic sectors, employing nearly 200,000 statewide at the start of the year. Employment fell by more than 8% when the pandemic hit last spring and has shown little sign of a rebound.  The hardest hit sectors have been primary metal manufacturing and transportation equipment production, down 24% and 19% respectively.  Oregon allowed factories to continue operating throughout the spring stay-home order and so the manufacturing downturn wasn’t as severe as it was in the hospitality and fitness sectors, for example. But those industries were in steady recovery for most of the year – that hasn’t happened at Oregon’s factories.  Precision Castparts, which supplies large metal components to the aviation industry, is in the process of laying off 40 percent of their workers.


Tyler Simones
Partner
Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management

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