Monthly Investment Update: August 2020

Risk assets rose sharply in July as investors digested US economic and corporate earnings data for the second quarter 2020 and tracked the progress of a potential new stimulus bill from Washington. The S&P 500 returned 5.6% during the month, led by the consumer discretionary sector, which is now significantly composed of e-commerce companies like Amazon, which returned 9.0% during the month.

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Monthly Investment Update: July 2020

The first half of 2020 has seen many unprecedented events, both in terms of the impact on society from the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the resulting extreme movements in risk assets. The year began on a relatively optimistic tone as US equity markets marched toward all-time highs in February, aided by tailwinds from stable economic conditions, an accommodative Federal Reserve, and substantive progress on the US-China trade dispute.

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Monthly Investment Update: June 2020

May marked another month in the recovery of risk asset prices following the declines in February and March. Investors continued to be optimistic regarding the potential for a COVID-19 vaccine as well as the resumption in economic activity as stay-at-home orders and business closures were relaxed. Despite the unprecedented decline in the US economy that is still unfolding, US equities, as measured by the S&P 500 index, rose 4.8% during the month and are now down just 5.0% for 2020 and 10.1% below their all-time closing high of 3,386 set on February 19.

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Monthly Investment Update: May 2020

After a difficult first quarter of 2020 for investors, April provided a much-needed reprieve as markets rallied sharply. US large cap equities, as measured by the S&P 500 index, had their best month in decades returning nearly 13%. Investors appeared optimistic that the significant stimulus provided by governments and central banks, lower energy prices, and evidence of potential new treatments for the COVID-19 virus could result in a swift recovery.

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