- November was a big month for news, events and returns in the market. The US elections came to an end with Joe Biden winning the race and the much awaited vaccine news for COVID-19 hit earlier in the month. And as a result lifted returns to the tune of nearly 11% for the S&P 500.
- The vaccine news was particularly good for the DOW Jones Industrial Average and the US small caps, which in November saw fresh all-time highs, for the first time since pre-COVID days. The promising results from Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca also come as COVID-19 daily numbers also hit new highs.
What we did:
- US equities again lead the way in global stock returns, headed by IVV as a top contributor to performance in our global diversification strategy. Yet our balanced portfolios remained cautious leading up to the US Presidential election, maintaining a conservative portion to endure the volatility.
- In terms of individual equities, the most notable performance came from QS (formerly KCAC) which alone saw a 250% return for the month. Towards the end of November we began trimming gains from top performers. Those proceeds will be used as a tactical component when the opportunity arises.
- Our conservative allocations remained overweight in US government issues and the high-quality end of the market.
What we are watching:
- The market remains heavily focused on the COVID vaccine, the hopes of which seem to be overshadowing short term fears of the virus’ further spread, as we head into the year-end holiday season. We will be watching news on clinical trials for the vaccine and what that means to get the world economy back on track.
- We will also keep an eye on the upcoming US Senate election, which might tip Washington’s status quo as there is a real possibility of having an all-Democratic government.
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