US Equity Markets hit fresh record highs last week despite Fed governors indicating rate hikes may be less than Wall Street currently anticipates, as gains in mega-cap Technology stocks continue. The S&P 500 was up 1.2% for the week and is now up 1.5% for the year. The S&P 500 Equal Weight index fell 0.2% for the week and is down 1.3% for the year. The Nasdaq rose 2.3% for the week to move into positive territory, now up 2.0% for the year. The Russell 2000 (small cap stocks) underperformed for the week, down 0.3% and now down 4.1% for the year.
Global Equity Markets declined last week due to weak economic growth out of China. Developed Markets were down 2.0% for the week and are now down 2.5% for the year. Weakness in China led declines in Emerging Markets, down 2.6% for the week and now down 5.2% for the year.
US Interest Rates moved higher last week amid strong economic data and comments from Fed governors. Initial Weekly Jobless Claims fell to their lowest level since September 2022 while Consumer Sentiment for January rebounded sharply, suggesting the economy remains healthy. This caused the yield on the US 10-Year Treasury to rise to 4.14% vs. 3.96% the prior week. Wall Street still expects the Fed to lower rates 5 times in 2024, though now not starting until May.
Of Interest to Us
Value stocks typically outperform Growth stocks in election years. Since 1932, the average returns for Value stocks in an election year is 16.3%, while the average return for Growth stocks in an election year is 8.7%. While it is still early, Growth stocks so far this year are up 3.3% while Value stocks are down 0.3%.
for the week ending 1/19/2024
If you have questions about the markets or would like to talk about your investments, please contact me at email@example.com or via phone at 704.940.3544.
Investors Trust Company helps its clients make sound financial decisions by providing strategic advice and asset management services with a high level of personalized attention. If we may help you or your clients with their investment management needs, please contact one of our Relationship Team members at firstname.lastname@example.org.