Macro Briefing: 29 January 2024

* Biden vows to retaliate after deadly attack on US forces in Jordan
* Iran distances itself from attack that killed 3 US soldiers in Jordan
* This week’s Fed policy decision may drop clues re: a March rate cut
* Rising real interest rates amid falling inflation is new challenge for Fed
* Falling inflation, solid growth give US economy edge over rest of world
* US borrowing by companies and consumers is picking up
* Evergrande, China’s giant property developer, is ordered to liquidate
* China approves over 40 AI models for public use over past 6 months
* US consumer spending accelerated in December:

The S&P 500 Index rose to a record high last week because of one sector: technology. The other ten sectors that comprise the index “are trading an average of 15% below their all-time highs, and none has set a new record in January,” reports The Wall Street Journal. “The equal-weighted S&P 500, which gives the same status to the smallest and largest companies in the index, is down 0.3% this year.” Over the trailing one-year window, the largest S&P 500 index fund (SPY) is up more than 22% while its equal-weighted counterpart (RSP) has climbed just 6%.

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