U.S. major equity averages finished July with solid gains, extending a rally recovery with the benchmark S&P 500 capping its best four-month gain since December 1998. Impressive July performance across diverse markets were backed by continuing fiscal and Federal Reserve stimulus programs aimed at relieving unprecedented economic effects resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Bullish sentiment was also fueled by better-than-expected earnings and meaningful progress toward developing COVID-19 vaccines.
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 2.51% last month, trimming its year-to-date (YTD) loss to 6.14%.
- Among the three major U.S. equity indices, the technology-dominated Nasdaq Composite (+6.85%) performed best, extending its YTD gain to 20.40%.
- From April through July, the S&P 500 has risen 27.3%, the Bloomberg Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index gained 4.44%, and the Bloomberg Commodities Index returned 11.0%.
- Gold futures surged 10.3% in July, ending at $1,986 per ounce, its best month in over four years. Intra-month, gold had topped $2,000 for the first time ever. Silver prices surged 29.9%.
- After a nearly year-long ascent, the U.S. Dollar Index weakened by 4.2% to end July at its lowest level since April 2011. The dollar spiraled amid rising budget deficits and a longer outlook for near-zero Fed Funds interest rates.
The Monthly Recap is published by Cetera Investment Management LLC, an SEC registered adviser owned by Cetera Financial Group. Cetera Investment Management provides market perspectives, portfolio guidance, model management, and other investment advice to its affiliated broker-dealers, dually registered broker-dealers and registered investment advisers.
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