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Market Commentary - 1Q 2018

Volatility surged during the first quarter. The US market got off to a strong start in January with stock prices rising steadily for much of the month. By the close on January 26, the S&P 500 was up 7.4%. This would prove to be the market’s peak for the month and the quarter. A variety of factors dragged the market lower during each of the three final trading sessions of January. During February, concerns about rising bond yields pressured equity values and drove stock market volatility sharply higher. During March, tariffs and troubled technology firms dragged stock prices lower.

Select Equity outperformed, benefiting from strong stock selection during the first two months and its stable growth style during the final month of the quarter.  Results for quantitative portfolios were mixed, as heightened policy uncertainty reduced Range of Opinion alpha during March.