The U.S. equity indicies managed to end the quarter with slight gains after a dismal start to the year. Several negative economic headlines combined with already weak earnings expectations to sink the S&P 500 more than 10% through mid-February. Slowing growth in China, a rising U.S. dollar, the specter of rising interest rates and the near collapse in the price of oil led to broad speculation that global economic fundamentals were weakening. When the headline concerns failed to manifest into substantive reductions in economic growth, the market bounced back as fast as it had fallen. The S&P 500 closed the quarter up 0.77%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed March up 1.49% and the NASDAQ composite ended down -2.75%.
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