Today, I’d like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. On the medical front, new daily infection rates and hospitalizations were down, and we saw improvement in positive testing rates. Although the threat of a more contagious variant of the virus remains, substantial progress on vaccinations should help offset that risk.
On the economic front, there are signs that the trends are starting to turn for the better. Layoffs have trended down for three weeks in a row, job growth looks to be improving again, and business confidence improved last month. As the markets take note of these fundamental shifts, will they continue to rise?