Chart of the Week
2023 saw equity markets recover significantly from the declines of 2022. In both the US and Europe, the movement was upward with the Nasdaq defying all expectations to soar 45%, the S&P 500 jumping 26% and the MSCI Europe climbing 16% (dividends reinvested).
In the face of global economic uncertainty, resilient US growth was driven by high household spending levels and a dynamic job market. With an unemployment rate hovering below 4% in the past year, consumers have continued to spend throughout. Meanwhile, Europe shifted into disinflationary mode on the back of falling energy prices enabled by easing pressure in supply chains.
On the markets, subsiding inflation led to interest rate falls, especially in the final two months of 2023, and provided growth stocks with a boost. US technology stocks outperformed, with the artificial intelligence (AI) boom invigorating the sector and the Magnificent Seven, a handful of mega-cap stocks, powering the US market. In Europe, solid performance across markets was driven by cyclical sectors such as banking and car manufacturing being underpinned by broadly resilient economic growth.
Written on January 5, 2024. This is not an investment advice. Opinions subject to change.
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