The Week's Top Stories is a guided tour through the biggest market stories of the week, from winning stocks to brutal dips to the facts and forecasts generating buzz on Wall Street.
RATE HIKE READY
At the Jackson Hole Economic Symposium Friday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the U.S. should prepare for more interest rate hikes. The Fed has implemented a pretty steady stream of increases since March 2022 when it was near zero to 5.4 percent, the highest it has been in 22 years. The inflation rate has dropped significantly during that period, from 9.1 percent to 3.2 percent, but it's still too far above the target rate of 2 percent for the Fed. Employment levels have remained strong throughout this period. The real estate seems to have taken the brunt of the impact, with mortgage rates hitting a new 22-year high average of 7.23 percent for a 30-year fixed-rate.
UPS AVOIDS STRIKE
There was good news for online shoppers this week: UPS struck a deal with workers that will avoid a strike. In the five-year deal, the shipping giant has agreed to increase and standardize pay, end forced overtime on drivers' days off, and add air conditioning to more trucks. The same cannot be said for the United Auto Workers union at the moment. This week autoworkers overwhelmingly voted to allow union leaders to call a strike if negotiations with General Motors, Ford and Stellantis don't start making some serious headway before the current contract expires on September 14.
DOLLAR TREE CHALLENGES
Dollar Tree has plenty of work on its hands. Its earnings report released this week beat Wall Street expectations, but the stock sunk as the company reported a difficult economy ahead. The discount store chain, which also owns Family Dollar, cited theft as a major issue. This week, Dollar Tree also received an order from the Labor Department giving it two years to turn around institutional failures that have created safety concerns in stores throughout the country. The company will have to figure out what is causing stores to do things like block emergency exits and stack boxes to dangerously tall heights - and then figure out how to fix it in all locations.
NVIDIA SOARS ON AI
Nvidia revealed an incredible quarter in this week's earnings report. The computer chip giant made nine times more revenue than it did a year ago, largely thanks to the AI companies that are relying on its technology, and it expects to triple sales this quarter. The news sent the stock up 6 percent - just another milestone for the stock which has tripled in value this year.
Peloton stock dropped more than 20 percent on Wednesday after the company admitted it is struggling to keep up with demand for replacement seat posts that were recalled over safety concerns. While riders are without functional bikes, 20,000 of them have paused their subscriptions, which is a critical part of the company's business plan. In a letter to shareholders, President and CEO Barry McCarthy also noted consumers seem to be turning more toward travel and experiences, which is tough for a stay-at-home bike company.