PAS Weekly Commentary

Stocks hold steady at record highs

The major indices mostly settled this week little changed from last week, except the Russell 2000, which continued its recent outperformance and jumped 2.5% this week

There wasn't a big push to buy following solid gains last week, but importantly, there wasn't a big rush to sell either. The S&P 500 logged another record high close on Thursday ahead of the extended-holiday weekend.

Thursday's session was also the final trading day of the first quarter, which contributed to the muted index-level activity throughout the week due to the understanding that many stocks sit at or near all-time highs.

Bond and equity markets are closed on Friday for Good Friday, but there is still a slate of economic data to get through. The February Personal Income and Spending report, which features the Fed's preferred inflation gauge in the form of the PCE Price Indexes, will be released at 8:30 ET. Other data include the February advance goods trade deficit, advance Wholesale Inventories, and advance Retail Inventories at 8:30 ET.

Relative weakness in the mega cap and semiconductor spaces also played a role in limiting index-level moves this week. Some names in these spaces have exhibited a huge rise since the start of the year, so this price action reflected some normal consolidation activity.

The PHLX Semiconductor Index (SOX) fell 0.1% following news that China will not allow chips from AMD (AMD) and Intel (INTC) to be used in government computers.

Meanwhile, the equal-weighted S&P 500 jumped 1.6% this week. Only two S&P 500 sectors closed lower this week -- communication services (-0.8%) and information technology (-1.3%) -- while three sectors logged gains greater than 2.0%. The top performers were the utilities (+2.8%), real estate (+2.2%), and energy (+2.2%) sectors.

In corporate news, Dow component Boeing (BA) announced that CEO Dave Calhoun plans to step down as CEO at the end of 2024.

  • S&P 500: +0.4% for the week / +10.2% YTD
  • S&P Midcap 400: +1.8% for the week / +9.5% YTD
  • Nasdaq Composite: -0.3% for the week / +9.1% YTD
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average: +0.8% for the week / +5.6% YTD
  • Russell 2000: +2.5% for the week / +4.8% YTD

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Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and one cannot invest directly in an index. Diversification does not guarantee investment returns and does not eliminate the risk of loss.

Data and rates used were indicative of market conditions as of the date shown and compiled by Opinions, estimates, forecasts, and statements of financial market trends are based on current market conditions and are subject to change without notice. References to specific securities, asset classes and financial markets are for illustrative purposes only and do not constitute a solicitation, offer, or recommendation to purchase or sell a security. S&P 500 Index is a market index generally considered representative of the stock market as a whole. The index focuses on the large-cap segment of the U.S. equities market. Each company’s security affects the index in proportion to its market value. NASDAQ Composite Index is a market value-weighted index that measures all NASDAQ domestic and non-U.S. based common stocks listed on the NASDAQ stock market. Dow Jones Industrial Average is a widely used indicator of the overall condition of the stock market, a price-weighted average of 30 actively traded blue chip stocks, primarily industrials, but also includes financial, leisure and other service-oriented firms. Russell 2000 Index measures the performance of the smallest 2,000 companies in the Russell 3000 Index of the 3,000 largest U.S. companies in terms of market capitalization. MSCI Emerging Markets Index is a free float-adjusted market capitalization index that is designed to measure equity market performance of emerging markets.

Park Avenue Securities LLC (PAS) is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian). PAS is a registered broker/dealer offering competitive investment products, as well as a registered investment advisor offering financial planning and investment advisory services. PAS is a member of FINRA and SIPC.

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2024-172149 (Exp. 6/24)