The markets delivered excellent returns in 2019, but not without periods of significant volatility. Of course, the year isn’t over yet. With the prospect of impeachment looming, the markets may experience more twists and turns before the final bell of 2019. For now, let’s take a look back at November performance. Then please read on for a year-end message of gratitude from all of us here at Cardiff Park.
November Market Report
US stocks closed out November with their largest monthly gain since June. The S&P 500 ended the month with a 3.4% gain. The stock market has been climbing mostly higher after shaking off recession fears that helped knock stocks down during the summer. Better-than-expected corporate earnings, solid economic data, and interest-rate cuts by the Federal Reserve helped fuel the market rally. Investors also grew more optimistic about the prospects of a trade deal between the US and China. Gold prices fell slightly. The yield on the two-year Treasury Note normalized after inverting earlier in the fall. The S&P 500 Index still returned a 27.63% year-to-date (YTD).
World Asset Classes
The MSCI All Country World Index returned 2.44%, bringing YTD returns on the global benchmark to 22.29%. US stocks were the top performers, followed by international developed and emerging market equities, respectively. US crude prices were up 2.5%. Gold prices were down 3.0%. Yields on ten-year government bonds closed at 1.78%.
US equities as measured by the S&P 500 Index returned positive 3.63%. For the one-year period, returns on the index were positive 16.11%. Looking back three years, returns on the US benchmark averaged 14.88%. Small caps outperformed large caps. Value stocks underperformed growth stocks marketwide.
International Developed Stocks
Developed markets outside the US as measured by the MSCI World-Ex USA Index returned 1.25%, underperforming the US and outperforming emerging markets. YTD returns on the international index were 18.71%. Small caps outperformed large caps. Growth outperformed value marketwide. From a size perspective, small caps outperformed large caps.
Emerging Markets Stocks
Emerging markets as measured by the MSCI Emerging Market Index returned negative -0.14%, bringing YTD returns on the emerging markets index to positive 10.2%. Small caps underperformed large caps and growth outperformed value.
Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)
US REITs underperformed international REITs returning negative -1.35% versus negative -0.46%. US REITs returned 24.27% YTD versus 22.54% for non-US REITs.
The 10-year U.S. Treasury Bond closed at 1.78%, up from 1.69% last month. The 2-year Treasury bond closed at 1.61%. The U.S. 10-year and 2-year Treasury Bond spread normalized after inverting earlier in the fall. Barclay’s US Government Bond Index returned negative -0.05% for the period and positive 8.79% YTD. Treasury inflation protected securities (TIPS) gained 0.15%, bringing YTD returns to 8.02%. Barclay’s municipal bond index returned 0.25% for the month and 7.21% YTD. Barclay’s US High Yield Corporate Bond Index added 0.33% for the period, bringing YTD returns on the index to 12.08%. Oil decreased to close at $55.42 up from last month’s $54.14. Gold was down, closing at $1,470.4 from last month’s $1,515.40.
A Few Words of Gratitude
As 2019 draws to a close I’m grateful that despite periods of volatility, the markets still delivered handsome returns to our clients. Thank you for sticking to your strategy!
Each year makes me more grateful for the quality of people Cardiff Park seems to attract: investors who collectively exhibit a rational, well-informed and steadfast approach to achieving their financial goals. A special thanks to those of you who have recommended us to family and friends. We deeply appreciate your referrals.
I’m also grateful for the hard work and commitment of our Cardiff Park team. If you have interacted with our staff, you’ve experienced their professionalism and dedication.
Lately I’ve reflected on the powerful need for trust in our institutions and relationships. Investors who trust their financial advisor, their strategy, and their investment partners sleep better at night. At Cardiff Park we work to earn your trust every day. Our client relationships are built on a provable investment strategy, fee-only advice and low-cost funds. We strive for responsive service and regular communication, and we’re here when you need us. Thank you again for choosing Cardiff Park, and best wishes for happy holidays and a healthy, successful new year.
Do you have questions or concerns? Call me, I am here to help.
Cardiff Park Advisors
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