In a major change of leadership, energy, real estate and financials had a phenomenal year. On the bottom of the table we have gold miners (gold price dropped in a high inflation year), biotech and internet which slowed down after years of torrid growth.
Reviewing major stories of 2021 and how they affected the major asset class performance
Strong recent returns ARE a combination of earnings growth (expected to remain robust in the next few quarters as shown in Exhibit 2) and investors’ willingness to pay more for each dollar of those earnings (likely helped by Fed policies and lack of attractive alternatives).
S&P 500 index is up 19% so far this year, here I dig into the data on what’s driving it and what’s going on under the surface of the index.
S&P 500 has been steadily trending up all year and hasn’t been too far from all-time highs.
Now that full-year GDP numbers are out I can finish the 2020 year-in-review series by taking a look at major economic indicators. Needless to say last year’s economic datapoints will be massive outliers on long-term charts for years and decades to come.
Let’s take a look at 2020 performance of the U.S. sectors and industries. Technology stocks had a banner year lead by semiconductors.
Reviewing major stories of 2020 and how they affected the major asset class performance
To analyze impact of major COVID developments, I created two baskets of stocks. Each is a simple equally-weighted 20-stock basket with 5% allocation to every company. I chose the stocks subjectively and tried to represent various “angles” of the COVID trade without having too many airlines, online retailers or medical plays.
There were 38 companies in the S&P 500 with Q2 revenue decline of 50% or more. It makes sense that concerts, cruise operators, hotels/casinos, airlines and travel sites are heavily represented. There was very little activity in those areas in April, May and June. Energy sector is also featured prominently.