The S&P 500 Index has gained more than 20% so far this year, making more than 50 record highs along the way. Certainly nobody should be upset with that return if that was all 2021 brought us. However, we see signs that there could be more gains to come in the final two months of the year. Seasonal tailwinds, improving market internals, and clear signs of a peak in the Delta variant all provide potential fuel for equities heading into year-end, and we maintain our overweight equities recommendation as a result.
Fears over inflation, supply shortages, and slowing economic growth in China were pushed aside
last week as investors reacted to a daily succession of positive corporate earnings surprises. After
the Dow Industrials reached an all-time high intraday on Wednesday, fresh earnings reports, an
increase in existing home sales, and a new pandemic low in initial jobless claims–and continuing
claims–propelled the S&P 500 index to a new record high the following session.
We expect stocks to continue to grow into their valuations on the back of tremendous earnings momentum as the economy fully reopens, vaccine distribution continues, COVID-19 cases plummet in the United States, and stimulus spending continues to work its way through the economy. As economic growth accelerates, we believe conditions will remain favorable for cyclical value stocks to continue their recent run of outperformance.
MORE THAN MOST YEARS, it’s hard to look ahead to the next year, to 2021, without looking back at 2020. A global pandemic, a massive economic collapse, a bear market, a surprisingly sharp reversal, a hotly contested election where passions ran high, the impact of lockdowns—it was an unusual year of extraordinary challenges. In 2021 it’s time to restart the engines, but things are going to look different, feel different. 2020
has changed us, the way we do business, the way we connect. It’s also shown us our constants, what works for us, and what we hold on to.
AT THE MIDPOINT of 2020, we’re mindful that it’s been an extremely challenging year so far in the United States and around the globe. We’re in the midst of a pandemic that continues to impact all of us, our communities, and our economies.
AT LPL RESEARCH, as we look forward to the year 2020 and a new decade, some key trends and market signals will be important to watch, including progress on U.S.-China trade discussions, an encouraging outlook from corporate America, and continued strength in consumer spending. Trade risk, slower global growth,
WHEN WE RELEASED our Outlook 2019 - FUNDAMENTAL: How to Focus on What Really Matters in the Markets in December 2018, financial markets were in disarray. Global investors were scared by uncertain monetary policy, fiscal and legislative discord, slowing economic growth, and slackening corporate profits. Despite the increased volatility, we continued to believe that market and economic fundamentals remained generally sound.
AFTER NEARLY 10 YEARS of witnessing the U.S. economy and stock market recover—and thrive—investors are starting to wonder if we’ve seen all this expansion and bull market have to offer. Despite the market weakness we saw at the end of 2018, at LPL Research we expect the U.S. economy to grow in 2019 and support gains for stocks.
Over the past eight years extraordinarily accommodative monetary policy has served as the primary catalyst for spurring continued economic growth in the U.S. and around the globe.
Stock markets, bond markets, the economy, policy — some years they push and pull on each other lightly as markets follow their own path; in others, one influence, such as monetary policy, dominates. But sometimes, often following a period of change, understanding the pushes and pulls and how they interact becomes a key to reassessing market dynamics for the next year and beyond.