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Market Commentary – Q1 2024

Written by Theresa Gusman

Market Commentary

Don’t React… Anticipate!


Following a 24.3% rise in 2023, the S&P 500 advanced 10.6% in the first quarter. By quarter end, the S&P 500 had reached an all-time high, exceeding the January 2022 peak by 10% and the March 2020 COVID low by 135% (see Figure 1). Equity market performance remained highly concentrated in the first quarter as the so-called Magnificent Seven advanced 13% (despite a sharp decline in Tesla), more than two times the 6% rise in the other 493 stocks in the S&P 500. Reflecting the continued narrow tenor of the market, sustainability-themed strategies continued to underperform – albeit to a lesser degree. 

The US economy and corporate earnings remain strong although (1) the “data dependent” Fed and headline-driven market observers are moving toward our higher for longer stance on inflation and interest rates, (2) geopolitical risks remain high, and (3) major elections loom. Against this backdrop, we continue to believe markets could be choppy – reacting to the latest Fed pronouncement, or government or corporate data release — amid trend increases in the mid-to-high single digits with better breadth as 2024 progresses. 

View the Full PDF Market Commentary by clicking here.