Good riddance to February. It was another negative month for stocks, but the clear headline was Russia invading Ukraine and the potential impacts that would have on the global economy and stock market.
First things first, this means the first two months of 2022 have been in the red for the S&P 500 Index. “Seeing the first two months of a new year in the red isn’t a great feeling, but the good news is lately it hasn’t been a major warning sign,” explained LPL Financial Chief Market Strategist Ryan Detrick. “The first two months of 2016 and 2020 were both negative, but stocks were able to claw back and finish higher those years.”
It is important to remember that this is a midterm year and early in midterm years, stocks tend to have some trouble. That has played out once again in 2022, but don’t forget later in these years tend to see a very strong rally.
Another angle on this is looking at how stocks do each quarter, but broken up by the four-year presidential cycle. Again, investors need to know that this quarter and the next two are some of the weakest out of the entire four-year cycle.
Although midterm years tend to see overall weakness until late, be aware that March is one of the best months of the year.
Lastly, looking purely at March based on seasonality shows that this is a solid month. In a midterm year, it is the fourth best month and the past 20 years it is fifth best. Since 1950, it is more in the middle at the sixth strongest. Of course, it would have been better, but the 12.5% drop in March 2020 is skewing things.
Clearly headlines will move stocks in the near-term, but we continue to expect the overall economic growth in the U.S. to remain quite strong and likely push stocks back up to our fair value target of 5,000 on the S&P 500 by year-end.
This material is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. There is no assurance that the views or strategies discussed are suitable for all investors or will yield positive outcomes. Investing involves risks including possible loss of principal. Any economic forecasts set forth may not develop as predicted and are subject to change.
References to markets, asset classes, and sectors are generally regarding the corresponding market index. Indexes are unmanaged statistical composites and cannot be invested into directly. Index performance is not indicative of the performance of any investment and do not reflect fees, expenses, or sales charges. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results.
Any company names noted herein are for educational purposes only and not an indication of trading intent or a solicitation of their products or services. LPL Financial doesn’t provide research on individual equities. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, LPL Financial makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy.
All index and market data from FactSet and MarketWatch.
This Research material was prepared by LPL Financial, LLC.
Insurance products are offered through LPL or its licensed affiliates. To the extent you are receiving investment advice from a separately registered independent investment advisor that is not an LPL affiliate, please note LPL makes no representation with respect to such entity.
- Not Insured by FDIC/NCUA or Any Other Government Agency
- Not Bank/Credit Union Guaranteed
- Not Bank/Credit Union Deposits or Obligations
- May Lose Value
Tracking # 1-05250187