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Market Commentary: Week of July 6, 2020

Market_commentary_week_of_july_6_2020_bodyWhat Happened:

Despite worsening COVID-19 news, stocks managed to explode higher for the holiday-shortened week with the NASDAQ hitting another all-time high on Thursday. Nationwide, daily COVID cases rose to 50,000 per day with Texas, Florida, Arizona, and California leading the way. In response, all four states rolled back a fair amount of their economic reopening plans. To some degree, we are seeing the worst-case scenario where we start reopening, virus transmission picks back up, and we have to shut it down again. Already hard-hit states like New York are paying close attention and will be very slow and deliberate in their reopening. All in all, a pretty terrible picture. Nevertheless, stocks and corporate bonds did extremely well --looking for the sunny side of things. The BLS Employment Report surprised to the upside, showing the addition of 4.8 million jobs. However, many of these jobs were previously laid-off workers being called back for re-opening. Now, with COVID attacking many of those states that have reopened aggressively, this positive spike may be temporary. Additionally, initial jobless claims continue to remain stubbornly high, coming in at 1.43 million. Continuing claims also disappointed with at least 20 million Americans still out of work.  

  • The S&P 500 increased 4% the week. The average daily move for the week was 1%.

  • The NASDAQ increased 4.6% for the week. It should be noted that on Thursday the index printed another all-time high. The average daily move for the week was 1.14%.

  • The 2-year Treasury decreased 1 basis point for the week, closing at .154% Friday.

  • The 10-year Treasury increased 3 basis points for the week, closing at .67% Friday.

  • The VIX Index decreased 20% closing at 27.68 Friday.

  • The MOVE Index was flat for the week, closing at 50.96 Friday.

  • 5-year Investment Grade Corporates (as measured by Markit CDX) tightened 6 basis points for the week closing at 74 basis points Friday (from March 1st; high 152 bps, low 65 bps). High-yield corporate debt (as measured by Markit CDX) tightened 22 basis points, closing at 504.73 basis points (from March 1st; high 871, low 364).

  • US Dollar Index was flat, closing at 97.17 on Friday.

  • WTI Crude was up 5.6% using the August WTI Futures contract, closing at 40.65.

What’s Going to Happen:

We do not have a ton of tier-one economic data this week that can be expected to move markets too much, one way or the other. On Thursday, we will see if jobless claims ease a bit. We will get inflation data on Friday. Most importantly for stocks, the second-quarter earnings season begins. So far, stocks and other U.S. risk assets have remained impervious to bad news. This week, we expect continued bad news regarding the resurgence of COVID, especially in states that have now begun to admit that they probably reopened too soon. This, of course, does not bode well for an economic recovery to support the hopes and dreams of risk assets. Nevertheless, “buy the dip” is still very much alive and well.  Betting against that has been a loser’s game.



An index is unmanaged and not available for direct investment. Definitions sourced from Bloomberg.

  • The Bloomberg Barclays Global Aggregate Negative Yielding Debt Market Value Index represents the portion of the Bloomberg Barclays Global Aggregate Index that measures the aggregate value of global debt with a negative yield.

  • The S&P 500® is widely regarded as the best single gauge of large-cap U.S. equities and serves as the foundation for a wide range of investment products. The index includes 500 leading companies and captures approximately 80% coverage of available market capitalization.

  • The NASDAQ Composite Index is a broad-based capitalization-weighted index of stocks in all three NASDAQ tiers: Global Select, Global Market and Capital Market. The index was developed with a base level of 100 as of February 5, 1971.

  • The Cboe Volatility Index® (VIX) is a calculation designed to produce a measure of constant, 30-day expected volatility of the US stock market, derived from real-time, mid-quote prices of weekly S&P 500® Index (SPX) call and put options with a range of 23 to 37 days to expiration.

  • The ICE BofA MOVE Index is a yield curve weighted index of the normalized implied volatility on 1-month Treasury options. It is the weighted average of implied volatilities on the CT2 (Current 2 Year Government Note), CT5 (Current 5 Year Government Note), CT10 (Current 10 Year Government Note), and CT30 (Current 30 Year Government Note), with weights 0.2/0.2/0.4/0.2 respectively.

  • The Markit CDX North America Investment Grade Index is composed of 125 equally weighted credit default swaps on investment grade entities, distributed among 6 sub-indices: High Volatility, Consumer, Energy, Financial, Industrial, and Technology, Media & Tele-communications. Markit CDX indices roll every 6 months in March & September.

  • The Markit CDX North America High Yield Index is composed of 100 non-investment grade entities, distributed among 2 sub-indices: B, BB. All entities are domiciled in North America. Markit CDX indices roll every 6 months in March & September.

  • The U.S. Dollar Index (USDX) indicates the general international value of the USD. The USDX does this by averaging the exchange rates between the USD and major world currencies. Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) US computes this by using the rates supplied by some 500 banks.


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