November 15, 2016

A Week of Surprises

Last Tuesday, many Americans watched in great surprise as Donald Trump won our presidential election. Just that day, the New York Times had placed Hillary Clinton’s odds of winning at 85%, based on a range of state and national polls. But, like the Brexit vote this past June, 2016 seems to be the year of unexpected outcomes. As predicted, the markets initially reacted to uncertainty as they often do: with losses. Futures for the Dow, NASDAQ, and S&P 500 all dropped at least 4% in the middle of the night after Trump’s win. But come Wednesday morning, everyone was in for another surprise. Despite many predictions that the markets would sell-off if Trump won, all of the major U.S. indexes ended the week ahead. The S&P 500 was up 3.80%, the Dow gained 5.36%, NASDAQ increased 3.78%, and MSCI EAFE added 0.05%. The Dow even closed at an all-time high on Thursday and posted its best week since 2011, despite being slightly down on Friday. Needless to say, these two developments last week gave significant surprises for most people. Let’s look a bit deeper at the market’s reaction and what may lie ahead. Understanding the Rally The markets hate uncertainty, […]
November 3, 2016
big news headlines

Big Headlines Drive the Markets? – Weekly Update

Do big headlines drive the markets? At first glance, last week’s headlines may lead you to think that the markets are fluctuating more than they actually are. Yes, Hillary Clinton’s emails are in the news again (more on that below), but despite that surprise, the major indexes stuck to the same range-bound performance we’ve seen for the past three months. The S&P 500 ended down 0.69%, the NASDAQ was off 1.28%, and MSCI EAFE lost 0.44%. The Dow Jones Industrial Index eked out a 0.09% increase.   Three Key Events Last Week 1. FBI Announces Renewed Look at Hillary Clinton’s Emails What happened? On Friday, October 28, FBI Director James Comey sent a letter to Congress alerting them that the agency would be reviewing new Hillary Clinton emails discovered during their investigation of former Congressman Anthony Weiner. When news of Comey’s letter broke, the major indexes responded quickly-and negatively. For example, the Dow, which had been up 75 points, reacted with a nearly 150-point swing before closing about 10 points lower. What does this mean? The announcement threw a wrench in an already contentious and exhausting presidential race. Recently, polls showed that Clinton held a solid lead over Trump, and […]