U.S. stocks fell sharply yesterday after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell failed to reassure investors that the central bank would keep surging bond yields and inflation expectations in check. With yesterday’s steep sell-off, the Nasdaq turned negative on the year.
The US Economy added 379,000 jobs in February, well above the 210,000 economists had predicted. The unemployment rate also dropped slightly to 6.2% from 6.3%. The better than expected jobs report is pushing bond yields higher, with the yield on the 10 year Treasury Bond now above 1.6%.
New orders for U.S.-made goods increased more than expected in January, pointing to a sustained recovery in manufacturing even as the pace of business spending on equipment is slowing. The Commerce Department said that factory orders shot up 2.6% after rising 1.6% in December. Manufacturing, which accounts for 12% of the U.S. economy, has been driven by strong demand for goods, like electronics and furniture as 23.2% of the labor force works from home because of the virus.