The US stock markets were mixed last week as the Dow (-0.7%) and S&P 500 (-0.7%) were each down, while the NASDAQ (+0.2%) was up. Taxable bonds were relatively flat, while tax-free municipal bonds were up about 0.2% - 0.4%, continuing their recent rally. Most notable gainers in the market last week were small caps, as the Russell 2000 small cap index climbed over 2% for the week.
Honestly, I am truly perplexed by last week’s markets. For starters, I would have expected small cap stocks to have suffered last week, given that they are likely to be most impacted by economic shutdowns as a result of the recent spike in COVID cases. Then on Thursday, Treasury Secretary Mnuchin announced that they would be ending most of the emergency lending programs, including some of the bond purchasing programs. I would have expected news like that would cause bonds to lose value, but they performed well at the end of the week. Further, the NASDAQ was up slightly, yet large cap growth stocks were down, which is the exact opposite of what I would have been expected. All that said, my experience has shown me that the markets don’t always behave the way you’d expect them to behave. Last week was one of those times.
See below for last week’s market recap, have a great week, and we wish a safe and healthy Thanksgiving to you and your families.