The coronavirus continues to spread and the tone in the United States and all over the world has shifted sharply over the last 24 hours. In a very eventful day, the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus a global pandemic, Italy took major action, and financial markets took a big hit.
The U.S. economy added 145,000 jobs in December, extending the streak of monthly gains to 111. December’s gain slightly missed the expected 160,000, but nevertheless capped a strong decade that saw the U.S. economy add almost 23 million jobs and end with the unemployment rate at a 50-year low of 3.5%.
Longer-term U.S. government bond prices fell last week on data that increased optimism surrounding the U.S. economic outlook. Data released last week showed the U.S. labor market remains strong, with job gains, the unemployment rate, and wage growth all beating expectations.