March 20, 2021 Weekly Market Update. The decline in U.S. equity indices were led by the Nasdaq (-0.79%), followed by the S&P 500 Index (-0.77%) and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (-0.46%). The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite has fallen in recent weeks and remains off about -7% from its all-time-high about a month ago, which is emblematic of both sector market rotation and investor concerns over inflation. Indeed, the Fed’s zero interest rate policy together with government stimulus spending could tip the inflation rates scale above the Fed’s 2.0% target.
March 13, 2021 Weekly Market Update. In response to the passing of the $1.9 trillion stimulus package by Congress and more than 101.1 million vaccine doses now administered (reaching 19.9% of the total U.S. population), the U.S. equity markets rallied on the week: Dow Jones +4.07%, the Nasdaq +3.09% and the S&P 500 +2.64%. However, bonds are down on inflationary concerns and an uptick in the treasury yield curve, with the mainstream U.S. corporate bond index (symbol: AGG) -2.85% YTD. With bonds often a core asset class of most portfolios, even though equities are rallying there remains a return drag from the fixed-income components.
March 5, 2021 Weekly Market Update. The U.S. equity markets were mixed with the tech-sector losing ground on continued delays and uncertainties over the stimulus package in Congress, along with Fed Chair Powell’s comments which suggested the Federal Reserve does not intend to take any action to mitigate the rising treasury bond curve yields, which disappointed investors. For the week the S&P 500 Index edged up +0.81% while the Nasdaq lost -2.06%. However, the S&P 500 is still in a cooling-off pattern and is off about -3.5% since its high of last month, which is the second pause in the market since the index’s breakout back in November of 2020.