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The Morning View: April 3, 2020

Senior Vice President / Portfolio Manager

Announced this morning, the economy lost 701,000 jobs in March, more than expected. The Leisure and Hospitality sector was especially weak given the government lead shutdown and pandemic we are currently working through. The unemployment rate moved higher to 4.4%, from 3.5%, and Average Hourly Earnings increased 3.1% on an annual basis, slightly higher than expected. Overall, an expected weak report, reflecting data back in March when we were at the start of the government led shutdown. As seen in the nearly 10 million initial jobless claims in the past two weeks, additional difficulty in the labor market can be expected. While massive fiscal and monetary response already announced is likely to help, releases in the weeks ahead should reflect further negative economic data as we work through this period. In all, both bond yields and equity futures are both lower as we head into the market open.

This material is intended to be for informational purposes only and is intended for current or prospective clients of Argent Trust Company. This information is obtained from sources believed to be reliable, and its accuracy and completeness are not guaranteed. Information does not constitute a recommendation of any investment strategy, is not intended as investment advice and does not take into account all the circumstances of each investor. Forward‐looking assumptions are Argent Trust Company’s current estimates or expectations of future events or future results based on proprietary research and should not be construed as an estimate or promise of results that a portfolio may achieve. Actual results could differ materially from the results indicated by this information. Investments can go down as well as up. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future results.