Market insights and analysis

How dynamic, risk-managed investment solutions are performing in the current market environment

3rd Quarter | 2020

Market insights and analysis

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Updates on how dynamic, risk-managed investment solutions are performing in the current market environment.

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March ETF Deathwatch contains 399 zombie ETFs and ETNs.

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The major stock market indexes finished substantially higher last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 12.7%, the S&P 500 Index rose 12.1%, the NASDAQ Composite rallied 10.6%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index bested all of the other indexes with an 18.5% gain. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 12 basis points, sending Treasury bonds generally lower. Last week, spot gold closed higher at $1,683.63, up $62.92 per ounce, or 3.9%.

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When I was a kid, it seemed that Good Friday afternoon was always the same. The spring sunshine of the morning would be transformed into a cloudy afternoon. This Good Friday was no exception. Yet, as I sat looking out from my backyard deck on Friday afternoon, a small patch of blue sky stood out, like a turquoise broach pinned to a cable-knit sweater of multiple shades of gray.

Last week, gold prices hit a seven-year high, breaking through the $1,700-per-ounce level and closing at $1,752.80 per ounce—a gain of more than $100 per ounce (see the following chart).

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​​​​​​​One of my favorite novels is Joseph Heller’s 1961 best seller, “Catch-22.” As a teenager, I found the novel hilarious and surprisingly relevant given my father’s experiences in the U.S. Army Air Corps. He, like the chief protagonist in the novel, flew bomber missions in World War II. He spent three years dealing with the Air Corps’ regulations and bureaucracy, and he loved, as Heller did in the novel, to recount their absurdity.