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January 2016 Market Commentary
Global equity indices fell precipitously to start 2016 as investors, hit by renewed fears of slowing global growth, engaged in risk-off trading activity by shifting capital to safe haven securities and currencies. Weak economic data and heightened geopolitical fears caused domestic indices to enter correction territory, a slide of 10% or more, while oil plummeted to its lowest level in more than 12 years.
For the month, the S&P 500 Index lost 5.0%, while the Russell 2000 Index of smaller companies finished 8.8% lower. The telecommunication and utility sectors were the only positive performers, while the financials, materials and healthcare sectors underperformed. Across market capitalizations, large-cap securities generally outperformed their mid- and small-cap counterparts. Value stocks outperformed growth securities.