What happened in early January? Bloomberg Business outlined major stock moves that helped contribute to choppy markets leading into 2016 in the article, “August More Than a Memory in S&P500 as Industries Join Rout.” By the release of the article on January 13th, four of the ten major S&P 500 industries dipped below August lows, causing concerns about global growth slowdown to eclipse any perceived benefit from higher interest rates. Similar to last summer, energy and financials declined, and technology tumbled from a 15-year high as money fleeing tech stocks hit a one-year high. “Whether it’s fund managers or algorithms battering stocks, it could get worse,” said our CIO Steve Wruble in the discussion. “Now we’re into earnings season so it’s itchy trigger fingers.” With investors and some market leaders pulling back, there’s no one to buy the dip. After U.S. oil hit a 12-year low, and with consumer, tech, financials and energy all down in the first fortnight of the year, there are not many places to hide. If not already prepared, now is a good time to review client portfolios and solidify an investment strategy for any market environment. Depending on prevailing market trends, 2016 could be a bumpy ride.
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