Market insights and analysis

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

2nd Quarter | 2021

Market insights and analysis

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

Equities were up in the second quarter despite some market choppiness in May. The NASDAQ 100 Index was the leader for the quarter with an 11.2% gain. The Russell 2000 small-capitalization index was the domestic laggard, up 4.0%. Emerging markets were the weakest performers, gaining 3.8%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes finished generally higher last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.2%, the S&P 500 Index rose 0.4%, the NASDAQ Composite also climbed 0.4%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index—the lone loser—dropped 1.1%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 6 basis points to 1.36%, boosting bond prices for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,808.32, up $21.02 per ounce, or 1.18%.

Major U.S. stock market indexes were mostly up last week. The S&P 500 increased by 1.67%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.02%, the NASDAQ Composite rose by 1.94%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 1.23%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 10 basis points to 1.42%, taking Treasury bonds higher for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,787.30, up 0.33%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes finished higher last week. The Russell 2000 small-capitalization index stormed ahead 4.32%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 3.44%, the S&P 500 Index continued to hit new highs with a 2.74% gain, and the NASDAQ Composite advanced 2.35%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield increased 9 basis points to 1.52%, as bonds were mixed for the week. The 10-year yield has remained range-bound for weeks, trending slightly downward. Spot gold closed at $1,781.44, up 0.98%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes finished lower last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 3.4%, the S&P 500 Index gave back 1.9%, the NASDAQ Composite tumbled 0.3%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index dropped 4.2%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 1 basis point to 1.44%. Spot gold closed at $1,764.16, down $113.37 per ounce, or 6.04%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes were mostly up for the week. The Russell 2000 gained 2.16%, the NASDAQ Composite rose 1.85%, the S&P 500 (which continues to hit new highs) was up 0.41%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.80%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield dropped 10 basis points to 1.45%, taking Treasury bonds up for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,877.53, down 0.74%.

Major U.S. stock market indexes were up last week. The S&P 500 increased by 0.61%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.66%, the NASDAQ Composite rose by 0.48%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index gained 0.77%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 4 basis points to 1.55%, taking Treasury bonds higher for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,891.59, down 0.64%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes ended higher for the week. The Russell 2000 small-cap index gained 2.45%, the NASDAQ Composite gained 2.08%, the S&P 500 was up 1.20%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.03%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 3 basis points to 1.59%, taking bonds slightly higher for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,903.77, up 1.20%.

Major U.S. stock market indexes were mostly down last week. The S&P 500 decreased by 0.39%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.51%, the NASDAQ Composite increased by 0.31%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 0.42%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 1 basis point to 1.62%, taking Treasury bonds higher for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,881.25, up 2.05%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes finished lower last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.1%, the S&P 500 Index gave back 1.4%, the NASDAQ Composite tumbled 2.3%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index dropped 2.1%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 5 basis points to 1.63%, taking bonds lower for the week. Gold was the only winner. Spot gold closed at $1,843.43, up $12.19 per ounce, or 0.67%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes ended mostly higher last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 2.67%, the S&P 500 gained 1.23%, the Russell 2000 was up 0.23%, and the tech-dominated NASDAQ Composite fell 1.51%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 5 basis points to 1.58%, as bonds were largely up for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,831.24, up 3.51%.

Major U.S. stock market indexes ended mostly lower last week. The S&P 500 increased by 0.02%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.50%, the NASDAQ Composite decreased by 0.39%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 0.24%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 7 basis points to 1.63%, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,769.13, down 0.45%.

The major U.S. stock market indexes finished mostly lower last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.5%, the S&P 500 Index slipped 0.1%, and the NASDAQ Composite fell 0.3%. In contrast, the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index gained 0.6%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 2 basis points to 1.555%, leaving bonds flat for the week. Spot gold closed the week at $1,777.20, up $0.69 per ounce, or 0.04%.

Equities were up in the first quarter despite some market choppiness during the rise. Domestic large-cap stocks were the worst performers, but the S&P 500 Index still gained more than 6.1%. The Russell 2000 small-capitalization index led the pack once again, gaining more than 12.5% for the quarter.

Major U.S. indexes ended mixed last week. The S&P 500 increased by 2.71%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.95%, the NASDAQ Composite was up 3.12%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 0.46%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 6 basis points to 1.66%, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,743.88, up 0.84%.

The markets were up last week as we closed out the first quarter of the year. The tech-dominated NASDAQ Composite gained 2.60%, the Russell 2000 was up 1.49%, the S&P 500 gained 1.41%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.24%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 5 basis points to 1.72%, though bonds as an asset class were largely up for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,728.87 for the week, down 0.19%.

Major U.S. indexes ended mixed last week. The S&P 500 increased by 1.57%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.36%, the NASDAQ Composite was down 0.58%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 2.88%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 4 basis points to 1.68%, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,732.52, down 0.73%.

The major stock market indexes finished lower last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.5%, the S&P 500 Index slipped 0.7%, the NASDAQ Composite fell 0.8%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index tumbled 2.8%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 10 basis points to 1.727%, sending bonds lower for the week despite a late-week rally. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,745.23, up $18.12 per ounce, or 1.1%.

Major U.S. indexes ended higher last week, with most hitting record highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 4.07%, the S&P 500 increased by 2.64%, the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index rose 7.32%, and the NASDAQ Composite was up 3.09%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 6 basis points to 1.63%, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,727.11, up 1.60%.

The equity markets were mixed last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.82% and the S&P 500 was up 0.81%. The Russell 2000 small-cap index was down 0.40% for the week, and the tech-dominated NASDAQ Composite fell 2.06%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 16 basis points to 1.57%, as Treasury bonds fell significantly for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,700.64, down 1.93%.

The major stock market indexes tumbled last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.8%, the S&P 500 Index declined 2.5%, the NASDAQ Composite fell 4.9%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index dipped 2.9%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 6 basis points to 1.405%, as its price weakened. Spot gold closed the week at $1,734.04, down $50.21 per ounce, or 2.8%.

Market Update 2/22/21

Major U.S. indexes ended mostly lower last week, as inflation worries returned and longer-term yields saw their highest levels in almost a year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up by 0.1%, the S&P 500 decreased by 0.7%, the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index fell 1.0%, and the NASDAQ Composite was down 1.6%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 13 basis points to 1.33%, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,784.25, down 2.19%.

Market Update 2/16/21

Equity markets were up last week. The Russell 2000 Index posted the best performance with a 2.51% gain, followed by the NASDAQ composite (+1.73%), the S&P 500 Index (+1.23%), and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (+1.00%). The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 4.5 basis points to 1.21%, as Treasury bonds fell slightly for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,824.23, up 0.56%.

Market Update 2/8/21

The major stock market indexes soared higher last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 3.9%, the S&P 500 Index rose 4.6%, the NASDAQ Composite climbed 6.0%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index increased 7.7%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 10 basis points to 1.168%, as its price weakened. Spot gold closed the week at $1,814.11, down $3.54 per ounce, or 1.82%.

Market Update 2/1/21

Major U.S. indexes pulled back last week, experiencing record trading volumes and high volatility. The Russell 2000 small-capitalization index fell 4.4%, the NASDAQ Composite was down 3.5%, the S&P 500 decreased by 3.3%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 3.3%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 2 basis points to 1.07%, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,847.65, down 0.43%.

The major stock market indexes finished higher last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.6%, the S&P 500 Index rose 1.9%, the NASDAQ Composite climbed 4.2%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index increased 2.2%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield and its price ended the week essentially flat. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,855.61, up $27.16 per ounce, or 1.5%.

Equities were up significantly in the fourth quarter despite a dip in October. Domestic large-cap stocks were the worst performers, but the S&P 500 Index still gained more than 11%. The Russell 2000 small-capitalization index led the pack, gaining more than 30% for the quarter. Value stocks outperformed Growth for the quarter. Emerging markets gained over 18% for the quarter, and international developed stocks rose 15.7%.

The new year brought new highs, with all major U.S. indexes trading at record levels last week. The Russell 2000 small-capitalization index rose 5.92%, the NASDAQ Composite was up 2.43%, the S&P 500 increased by 1.83%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.61%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 20 basis points to 1.12%, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,849.01, down 2.60%.

The major stock market indexes finished mixed last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.4%, the S&P 500 Index rose 1.4%, and the NASDAQ Composite increased 0.7%. In contrast, the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 1.5%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield and its price ended the week essentially flat. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,898.02, up $14.59 per ounce, or 0.8%.

The markets saw some selling pressure last week as traders looked to lighten their exposure over the long holiday weekend. That combined with the doubt surrounding the passage of a COVID relief bill resulted in mixed equity markets last week: The S&P 500 fell 0.17%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.07%, the NASDAQ Composite gained 0.38%, and the Russell 2000 led performance with a 1.72% gain. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 2 basis points to 0.93%, as Treasury bonds rose slightly for the week. Spot gold closed at $1,883.43, up 0.11%.

Stocks traveled north last week, with all major U.S. indexes trading at all-time highs. The NASDAQ Composite was up 3.05%, the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index also rose 3.05%, the S&P 500 increased by 1.25%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.44%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 5 basis points to 0.95%, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,881.31, up 2.26%.

The major stock market indexes finished mostly lower last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.6%, the S&P 500 Index fell 1.0%, and the NASDAQ Composite declined 0.7%. In contrast, the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index advanced 1.0%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 7 basis points, and bond prices were up slightly. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,862.73, up $23.87 per ounce, or 1.3%.

The major stock market indexes were up last week, with the Dow and S&P hitting all-time highs. The NASDAQ composite led with a gain of 2.1%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.0%, the S&P 500 Index rose 1.7%, and the Russell 2000 gained 2.0%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose about 13 basis points, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Spot gold gained 2.7%. International developed rose 1.2% and emerging markets rose 1.6%, showing a bit more strength.

As pointed out in last week’s Market Update, Thanksgiving week is normally very bullish for the markets. The shortened holiday week followed history in a big way. Each index was up over 2%, and for the first time, the Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed above 30,000!

The major stock market indexes finished mixed last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.7%, the S&P 500 Index fell 0.8%, the NASDAQ Composite rose 0.2%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index rose 2.4%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 7 basis points, and bond prices were up slightly. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,870.99, down $18.21 per ounce, or 0.96%.

The major stock market indexes were mostly up this week, responding to positive news about the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Market Update 11/9/20

As Election Day turned into election week, the major indexes rallied, experiencing weekly gains not seen since April. The NASDAQ Composite surged 9.0%, the S&P 500 gained 7.3%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 6.9%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index increased 6.9%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 5 basis points to 0.82%, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,951.35, up 3.86%.

The major stock market indexes finished to the downside last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 6.5%, the S&P 500 Index fell 5.6%, the NASDAQ Composite slipped 5.5%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost ground at a 6.2% rate. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 3 basis points, causing Treasury bonds generally to fall. Last week, spot gold closed lower at $1,878.81, down $23.24 per ounce, or 1.2%.

In 1999, I began working with writer Susan Ward at the weekly financial news magazine Barron’s to produce a series of columns on Flexible Plan Investments’ (FPI’s) Political Seasonality Index (PSI).

The major stock market indexes were mixed last week. The NASDAQ was down 1.1%, the S&P 500 Index fell 0.5%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.0%, and the Russell 2000 gained 0.4%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose about 10 basis points, as Treasury bonds fell slightly for the week. Last week, spot gold rose slightly, gaining 0.2%.

After a rally on Monday, the major indexes pulled back and finished last week relatively flat.

Equities were up significantly in the third quarter despite a sell-off in September.

The major indexes gained last week. The NASDAQ Composite finished the week up 1.48%, the S&P 500 gained 1.52%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.87%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index gained 4.37%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 5 basis points to 0.70%, as Treasury bonds fell for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,899.84, up 2.06%.

Market Update 9/28/20

The major stock market indexes finished mixed last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1.75%, the S&P 500 Index fell 0.6%, the NASDAQ Composite rose 1.11%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 4.0%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 3 basis points, and bond prices were flat. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,861.58, down $89.28 per ounce, or 4.6%.

Market Update 9/21/20

The major stock market indexes were mixed last week, with some further consolidating gains seen this year. The NASDAQ 100 Index (the laggard for the week) was down 1.4%, the S&P 500 Index fell 0.6%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.03%, and the Russell 2000 gained 2.6%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose about 3 basis points, as Treasury bonds fell slightly for the week. Last week, spot gold rose slightly, gaining 0.4%.

Market Update 9/14/20

The major indexes posted losses last week. The NASDAQ finished the week down 4.60%, the S&P 500 lost 2.51%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 1.66%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 2.48%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 5 basis point to 0.67%, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,940.55, up 0.34%.

Market Update 9/8/20

The major stock market indexes posted strong losses this week, consolidating some of the gains seen this year. The NASDAQ 100 (the laggard for the week) was down 3.1%, the S&P 500 Index fell 2.3%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.8%, and the Russell 2000 fell 2.7%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose about ½ of a basis point, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Last week, spot gold also fell somewhat as investors locked in returns, losing 1.6%. Year-to-date, the NASDAQ 100 is still up over 33% and gold is up over 27%, highlighting how well these asset classes have done.

Market Update 8/31/20

The major stock market indexes posted strong gains last week. The NASDAQ 100 (the leader for the week) was up 3.8%, the S&P 500 Index rose 3.2%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 2.6%, and the Russell 2000 (the worst performer for the week) gained 1.7%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose about 9 basis points, as Treasury bonds fell slightly for the week. Last week, spot gold continued its move upward, rising 1.3%. Lately, the metal has performed more as an inflation hedge than a safe-haven asset. It is up nearly 30% year to date.

The major indexes posted mixed performance last week. The NASDAQ finished the week up 2.65%, the S&P 500 gained 0.72%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was flat, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index lost 1.61%. The 10-year Treasury bond yield fell 8 basis point to 0.63%, as Treasury bonds rose for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,940, down 0.24%. Most notably, the S&P 500 traded above pre-pandemic highs set in February. This was the fastest bear market and second-fastest bear market recovery in U.S. history.

The major stock market indexes finished up last week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 2%, the S&P 500 Index rose 0.7%, the NASDAQ Composite gained 0.08%, and the Russell 2000 small-capitalization index gained 0.55 %. The 10-year Treasury bond yield rose 17 basis points, as Treasury bonds lost nearly 0.9% for the week. Last week, spot gold closed at $1,945.12, down $90.43 per ounce, or 4.4%.