ROBARE & JONES ON THE MARKETS
The S&P 500 fell 2.2% this week as the final days of Q3 amid worries about inflation and supply chain issues outweighed a positive start to Q4 on Friday as data showed August consumer spending rose more than expected
The S&P 500 posted a 4.8% drop for the month of September, marking its first monthly drop since this January and its largest monthly decline since March 2020, when the pandemic began prompting shutdowns, but remains up 16% for the year to date.
This week's decline came as investors exerted caution into the end of the quarter amid concerns about inflation, supply chain disruptions and continued pandemic impacts on economic growth. Adding to the worries, the Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee indicated last week that it may begin reducing bond buying as soon as November and could start raising rates next year.
However, despite rising prices, data released Friday showed consumer spending rose by 0.8% in August, better than expectations for a 0.6% rise and marking a strong improvement from July's 0.1% slip. Investors were encouraged by the better-than-expected consumer spending data, especially heading into the holiday shopping season.
Let's take a look at the markets from this past week!
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The pandemic accelerated the adoption of autonomous checkouts at retailers. Some stores have self-checkouts, while others have installed a “combination of sensors, cameras, computer vision and deep learning” that makes it possible to eliminate cashiers and checkouts entirely, reported Anna Oleksiuk on the Intellias blog.
At the other end of the shopping-experience spectrum is the “Kletskassa,” also known as the “chatty checkout,” which was implemented by a large grocery store chain in the Netherlands. It’s a checkout line that promises conversation with the cashier.
The slower, chatty lane was developed specifically for older citizens, but may appeal to a much wider group of people on days when they have the time to engage.
What line do you prefer at the grocery store?