Macro Briefing: 22 March 2024

* US govt sues Apple, charging that its iPhone ecosystem is a monopoly
* US Leading Economic Index unexpectedly rises in February
* Jobless claims eased last week, reaffirming strong US labor market
* Philly Fed Index indicates continued expansion in business activity
* PMI Composite Index continues to indicate modest US expansion:
* US existing home sales rise in February to highest level in a year:

US stock market closed at yet another record high on Thursday, based on the S&P 500 Index. “The likelihood of a recession fading provides impetus for stronger markets,” says Max Wolman, an investment director at abrdn in London. “Investors were too bullish on rate cuts by the Fed, this has now been priced out and the market sees three cuts this year as more realistic.”

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