Volatility and Performance of Options-Related Indexes in the 2010s

As we enter the 2020s with interest in worldwide geopolitical volatility, here are some key points about volatility and the performance of options-related indexes the 2010s. How Did Equity Volatility in the 2010s Compare to Volatility in Previous Decades? The average of the daily closing values of the VIX® Index in the 2010s was 16.9 Read more […]

Latin America – 2019 in Review

From a political and economic standpoint, 2019 was a challenging and interesting year for the Latin American region, but the region still finished strong. The S&P Latin America 40, Latin America’s blue-chip index, ended Q4 with a return of 9.0%, and it was up 13.9% for the year. Small-cap stocks in the region fared well, Read more […]

Performance and Volatility for Sectors in the 2010s

As we enter the 2020s, here are some key points about the 2010s – The U.S. economy has expanded for a record 126 straight months, the longest time period in U.S. history, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research. The bull market in U.S. stocks has run about 10.7 years, one of the longest Read more […]

S&P and Dow Jones Islamic Benchmarks Finished 2019 with Standout Performance

Shariah-Compliant Benchmarks Continued to Outperform Conventional Indices Global S&P and Dow Jones Shariah-compliant benchmarks finished a standout 2019, a welcomed turnaround in comparison to the lackluster returns of the prior year. Broad-based Islamic indices outperformed their conventional counterparts in 2019 as Information Technology—which tends to be overweight in Islamic indices—led sector returns by significant margins, Read more […]

Bonds Saw Green in 2019, but They May Be Red in 2020

Rarely do we see all segments of the market go up in unison, but 2019 saw broad-based gains across stocks, bonds, and commodities. In fact, not a single sovereign bond index we track ended in the red. Considering 42 central banks cut policy rates in 2019, this may have been expected, but we would have Read more […]

What’s Your U.S. View?

Every year, certain trends take centre stage and help to explain market returns. For example, expectations over trade negotiations and Fed policy were useful for explaining market performance in 2019.  Many of these developments often appear obvious with the benefit of hindsight, but identifying the trends and their subsequent impact in advance is far from Read more […]

S&P Composite 1500®: SPIVA

While the iconic S&P 500® is one of the world’s best known benchmarks, the S&P Composite 1500 (comprising the S&P 500, S&P MidCap 400®, and S&P SmallCap 600®) covers a broader spectrum of the capitalization of the U.S. equity market. Though the S&P 500 is often used as a measuring stick for large-cap fund performance Read more […]

The Quality Factor Beat the S&P 500 in 2019

In 2019, U.S. equities posted double digit gains, with the S&P 500® returning 31.49%—its best year since 2013 and second-best in a decade. This continued strong performance highlights the potential difficulty of beating the S&P 500.[1] The question then arises: what strategy (if any) outperformed the S&P 500 in 2019? Our latest S&P 500 Factor Read more […]

S&P China 500 Ignores Trade Tensions to End the Year on a High Note

The S&P China 500 advanced 12.9% in Q4 2019, an indication that investors shrugged off U.S.-China trade tensions and signs of a slowing economy. The performance was a reversal from losses during the prior two quarters, which had followed an outstanding 23.6% surge in Q1 2019. The full-year result was a welcome contrast to the Read more […]

U.S.-Iran Conflict – Financial Markets Appear to Look Past Another Geopolitical Risk

The financial market’s reaction to the escalation of tensions between the U.S. and Iran have so far been muted, even benign (see Exhibit 1). A little over a week from the U.S. killing of top Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani and Iran’s response (missile attacks on U.S. army bases in Iraq), and a casual observer of Read more […]