Almanac Update

Almanac Update July 2020: Not Much Sizzle in Election Years

July historically is the best performing month of the third quarter however, the mostly negative results in August and September tend to make the comparison easy. Two “hot” Julys in 2009 and 2010 where DJIA and S&P 500 both gained greater than 6% and a strong performance in 2013 and 2018 have boosted July’s average gains since 1950 to 1.2% and 1.1% respectively. Such strength inevitability stirs talk of a “summer rally”, but beware the hype, as it has historically ...

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Almanac Update June 2020: End of NASDAQ’s “Best Eight Months”

June has shone brighter on NASDAQ stocks over the last 49 years as a rule ranking seventh with a 0.8% average gain, up 27 of 49 years. This contributes to NASDAQ’s “Best Eight Months” which ends in June. June ranks near the bottom on the Dow Jones Industrials just above September since 1950 with an average loss of 0.2%. S&P 500 performs similarly poorly, ranking tenth, but essentially flat (0.1% average gain). Small caps also tend to fare well in ...

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Almanac Update May 2020: Weaker in Election Years

May officially marks the beginning of the “Worst Six Months” for the DJIA and S&P. To wit: “Sell in May and go away.” Our “Best Six Months Switching Strategy,” created in 1986, proves that there is merit to this old trader’s tale. A hypothetical $10,000 investment in the DJIA compounded to a gain of $1,068,826 for November-April in 69 years compared to just $1,461 for May-October. The same hypothetical $10,000 investment in the S&P 500 compounded to $823,326 for November-April ...

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Almanac Update April 2020: Can Top Month Curtail Market Rout?

The first trading day of April and the second quarter, has enjoyed notable strength over the past 25 years, advancing 18 times with an average gain of 0.40% in all 25 years for S&P 500. However, four of the seven declines have occurred in the last seven years. Other declines were in 2001, 2002 and 2005. DJIA’s record on April’s first trading day matches the S&P 500, 18 advances in 25 years. NASDAQ recent performance is slightly weaker than DJIA ...

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Almanac Update March 2020: Beware the Ides & Month-End Weakness

Boisterous March markets tend to drive prices up early in the month and batter stocks at month end. Julius Caesar failed to heed the famous warning to “beware the Ides of March” but investors have been served well when they have. Stock prices have a propensity to decline, sometimes rather precipitously, during the latter days of the month. In March 2001, DJIA plunged 1469 points (-13.5%) from March 9 to the 22.

March packs a rather busy docket. It is the ...

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Almanac Update February 2020: Can be Challenging in Election Years

Even though February is right in the middle of the Best Six Months, its long-term track record, since 1950, is rather tepid. February ranks no better than eighth and has posted meager average gains. Small cap stocks, benefiting from “January Effect” carry over; tend to outpace large cap stocks in February. The Russell 2000 index of small cap stocks turns in an average gain of 1.2% in February since 1979—just the sixth best month for that benchmark.

A strong February in ...

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Almanac Update January 2020: Not as Strong in Election Years

January has quite a reputation on Wall Street as an influx of cash from yearend bonuses and annual allocations typically propels stocks higher. January ranks #1 for NASDAQ (since 1971), but fifth on the S&P 500 and sixth for DJIA since 1950. It is the end of the best three-month span and holds a full docket of indicators and seasonalities.

DJIA and S&P rankings did slip from 2000 to 2016 as both indices suffered losses in ten of those seventeen ...

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Almanac Update December 2019: If Santa Claus Should Fail to Call, Bears May Come to Broad and Wall

December is now the number two S&P 500 month and the third best month on the Dow Jones Industrials since 1950, averaging gains of 1.5% on each index. It’s the third best month for NASDAQ since 1971. Last year DJIA suffered its worst December performance since 1931 and its fourth worst December going all the way back to 1901. However, the market rarely falls precipitously in December and a repeat of last year is not that likely. When it does ...

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Almanac Update November 2019: First Month of Best 3 Consecutive Month Span

November maintains its status among the top performing months as fourth-quarter cash inflows from institutions drive November to lead the best consecutive three-month span November-January. However, the month has taken hits during bear markets and November 2000, down –22.9% (undecided election and a nascent bear), was NASDAQ’s second worst month on record—only October 1987 was worse.

November begins the “Best Six Months” for the DJIA and S&P 500, and the “Best Eight Months” for NASDAQ. Small caps come into favor during ...

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Almanac Update October 2019: Second Worst Month in Pre-Election Years

October often evokes fear on Wall Street as memories are stirred of crashes in 1929, 1987, the 554-point drop on October 27, 1997, back-to-back massacres in 1978 and 1979, Friday the 13th in 1989 and the 733-point drop on October 15, 2008. During the week ending October 10, 2008, Dow lost 1,874.19 points (18.2%), the worst weekly decline in our database going back to 1901, in point and percentage terms. The term “Octoberphobia” has been used to describe the phenomenon ...

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