Business news for the financially illiterate


By Neil Offen

The stock market staged an impressive comeback yesterday, bouncing back from the impressive downturn it took the day before when investors weighed mixed jobs data and found that it had been taking Ozempic.

At the close of trading, the S & P 500 had added a letter, making it the S & A & P, and was offering buy-one-get-one-free deals on creamed canned corn. The index got a boost from reports that the Federal Reserve was predicting that the labor market would be open late tonight, so you can stop there on your way home.

In addition to the S & P, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, also known as the DJIA, or Bob, rose 74.75 points, or .064 percent, with an on-base plus slugging percentage of .762. Nevertheless, the Dow for the year is still 1.08 points below Celsius, even if you don’t figure in the wind-chill factor.

According to your third-grade math teacher, the NASDAQ composite climbed 19.47 points, which gave it nearly 20 points more than it had the day before.

The uptick in the markets ticked off a number of analysts who had forecast cloudy skies followed by sleet and rapacious hedge funds. Some analysts wondered whether the uptick was sustainable and whether uptickling was allowed on the exchange floor during business hours.

Economists debated whether the uptick could also be called a surge or a groundswell. The SEC said it would rule on the matter as soon as it checked a thesaurus, which was down 1.06 percent in heavy trading.  

Leading the S & P 500 uptick, surge or groundswell was the fast-food sector, which rose 11.78 points on news of France’s discovery of a french fry mine in the Alsace region. The news sent ketchup futures soaring. Salsa, meanwhile, was down in trading that was generally mixed, mostly with guacamole.

In testimony before a Senate banking committee, Fed Chair Jerome Powell responded to the news by saying, “What?”

Department store stocks also consolidated their gains despite fourth-quarter earnings reports showing they hadn’t made any money since 1997. That beat analysts’ expectations that the stores might have to go back to 1991 before they could find a dollar.

Meanwhile, Oreo funds lost ground and posted their largest loss since inadvertently double-stuffing their wallet a year earlier. 

Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen noted that the turnaround in the market reflected growing optimism that consumer confidence was rising and that investors were recovering from watching all three hours of Oppenheimer and mushing through four hours of the Oscars telecast. 

Carrboro resident Neil Offen has been a humor columnist for four decades and on two continents. He is the author of “Building a Better Boomer,” available wherever books are sold.

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