Market Update – March 2020
March experienced large swings across asset classes as markets entered the ominous beginning of the bear market.
Global stocks fell (‐14.4%) as fear of the coronavirus blasted headlines. Both U.S. small value (‐26.0%) and international small value (‐19.1%) plummeted. Bonds attempted to steady markets as short‐term (+0.8%) came in positive for the month. Alternatives were not exempt from volatility while REITs came in at ‐23.1%, but managed futures provided a positive return of +3.3%.
- With the suspension of businesses across the nation, unemployment ticked up to 4.4% in comparison to the March data of 3.5%.
- Unemployment filings in March saw the historic weekly highs of 3.3M and 6.9M.
- VIX market volatility rose 38.1 points this month, approaching all‐time highs.
- U.S. small (‐26.0%) and large value (‐16.1%) felt the weight of the pandemic as the bear market carried on.
- A similar theme carried out in the international developed markets with small value (‐19.1%), large value closely following (‐17.7%). International small cap (‐17.1%) and large cap (‐13.3%) were negative as well.
- Emerging markets fell (‐15.4%) as coronavirus‐related losses swept the globe.
- Bonds attempted to calm volatility with short‐term (0.8%) showing confidence and intermediate‐term (‐0.4%) chasing positivity.
- TIPS (‐1.8%) and international (‐1.5%) were negative for the month.
- Managed futures took the lead this month (+3.3%) for alternatives, while REITs (‐23.1%) and commodities (‐12.8%) lagged and reinsurance was roughly flat (‐1.8%).