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Michael Reinking, CFA
Sr. Market Strategist
Welcome back to those of you that have unplugged for a few days to enjoy the holiday and spend some time with family. On Friday as the world was struggling to understand the implications of the new Covid variant financial markets went through a bout of de-risking. Typically, volumes drop off significantly in the holiday trading session, however this was the heaviest post-Thanksgiving session in history with over 9B shares trading (~83% of November ADV). That amount of activity as trading desks were not fully staffed ahead of potential weekend headline risk likely exacerbated the weakness. After the shoot first ask questions later mentality has run its course markets are bouncing today. We haven’t learned all that much over the weekend and it will likely be another week or two until we have enough data to understand vaccine efficacy etc. but commentary from the science community has been reasonably optimistic thus far. While there have been multiple travel restrictions put in place, it does seem markets are taking some solace that we are not seeing widespread lockdowns. In fact, equities have extended gains this afternoon following comments from President Biden that lockdowns were not on the table at this point. As we head to print equity markets are near session highs trading back to about where we opened on Friday. The S&P 500 is up 75pts to 4,668 (+1.6%), the Dow is up 335pt to 35,235 (+1%) while the Russell 2k is up 16pts to 2,262 (+0.7%). While equities are broadly higher the outperformance by mega-cap tech stocks and semiconductors (XSD +~3%)again is pronounced. The NYSE FANG+ index is up ~2% despite the China components trading lower. The gains in travel related sectors and cyclicals are much more muted relative to the losses seen on Friday (AWAY/JETS +1% after falling ~7%).
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