2ND QUARTER EQUITIES
Equity Market: Growth in stock prices was widespread in the second quarter led by the energy and finance sectors. Technology lagged for much of the quarter but finished strongly in June. Indeed, contrary to the usual pattern, both growth and value stocks performed well.
The Dow Jones Composite Average gained 3.55% for the quarter and 13.75% for the year-to-date. The S&P 500 was ahead 8.55% for the quarter and 15.25% for the year. The Russell 2000 index gained 3.92% in the quarter and was up 17.54% for the year. The Nasdaq Composite made up for its slow start to the year and was ahead 9.68% for the quarter and 12.92% for the year-to-date.
Preferred Equities: As always, despite market conditions, we look for long-term equity opportunities. Our focus is on companies that can weather both the short-term period and flourish in a longer time frame. We want fundamentally sound companies with reasonable valuations and that pay dividends. In that context, we are looking at these sectors:
HEALTH CARE: This sector has interesting opportunities in biotechnology and in the variety of new treatments being developed for the aging population.
FINANCIALS: Somewhat higher interest rates may benefit the financial sector – and regional banks are appealing
INDUSTRIALS/MATERIALS: President Biden’s plans for infrastructure investment, if enacted, should create opportunity for many companies in this sector.
TECHNOLOGY: We are holding but not expanding our allocation to the FANG stocks. On balance, despite all the oversight issues, the Biden era should be favorable to the big companies and the smaller innovators.
ENERGY: This sector did well in the second quarter and may present opportunities worth exploring.