The Infamous September

September 13, 2019 | Jeffrey Hoffmeyer, CFA, Lead Analyst, Asset Allocation

When it comes to timing the stock market, one oft-heard saying is “Sell in May and go away,” which “warns” investors to try to avoid the underperforming summer months and re-enter the market sometime in October. While this might be little more than an anomaly, it is true that over the last 40 years these months do tend to have weaker performance. Most notable in underperformance is September, the only month to average a loss in the S&P 500.

Given the volatility and global growth trends we’ve seen recently, a disappointing September would hardly be surprising. Pairing this historical weakness with the results of last year’s fourth quarter — when equities were down 13.5% — it is understandable that many investors are nervous about the remainder of the year. Fortunately, performance has been positive with equities up 2.6% month-to-date at the time of writing. But what’s far more important is that despite some concerning headlines, the S&P 500 is still up over 21% year-to-date. Even if we do see some losses this month and 4Q disappoints, investors are still on track for a profitable year in their domestic stock portfolio.

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The opinions expressed herein are those of Marquette Associates, Inc. (“Marquette”), and are subject to change without notice. This material is not financial advice or an offer to purchase or sell any product. Marquette reserves the right to modify its current investment strategies and techniques based on changing market dynamics or client needs.

Jeffrey Hoffmeyer, CFA
Lead Analyst, Asset Allocation

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