US Stock Markets Ended Sept. 11, 2020

The S&P 500 Index returned -2.49% last week. The index has recorded gains for five consecutive months through August and is up 4.80% year-to-date. However, the first two weeks of September have trended down with the index currently down 4.50% for the month. Crude oil closed at $37.33 per barrel on Friday, declining 6.14% for the week. This is the second straight week of losses, marking the largest two-week decline since April. Energy stocks have been under pressure posting the worst sector performance in the S&P 500 Index for the last two weeks and is the only sector in the index to be in negative territory during the third quarter of 2020. Energy company Apache Corp posted the worst performance in the index last week, returning -18.60%. Other poor performing energy companies included Halliburton Company, Occidental Petroleum Corp, Concho Resources Inc., Diamondback Energy Inc., Devon Energy Corp, and TechnipFMC PLC which all posted double digit declines last week. Information technology also suffered last week due to Apple Inc., the largest weight in the S&P 500 Index, declining 7.41% and Microsoft Corp declining 4.77%. Semiconductor equipment stocks Lam Research Corp, KLA Corp, and Applied Materials Inc., were the worst performing stocks in the sector, returning -11.75%, -11.08%, and -9.78% respectively. Tapestry Inc., a premium fashion designer with brands such as Coach, Kate Spade, and Stuart Weitzman, took the top spot in the index returning 10.92%. The stock has struggled this year and is down 39% year-to-date. In mid-August, the company reported a smaller than expected loss for the previous quarter and earlier this month the company announced a reduction in workforce due to Covid-19. Speculators helped the stock jump last week as call option volumes were multiples higher than average. Tesla Inc., the electric vehicle innovator that is up 345% in 2020, had its worst day ever on Tuesday declining 21.06%. Many investors had speculated that the stock would be added to the S&P 500 Index, but the index committee chose to add Etsy Inc., Teradyne Inc., and Catalent Inc., to replace H&R Block Inc., Coty Inc., and Kohl's Corp. Lennar Corp, Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc., Adobe Inc., and FedEx Corp are expected to announce earnings this week.
Posted on Monday, September 14, 2020 @ 9:18 AM

These posts were prepared by First Trust Advisors L.P., and reflect the current opinion of the authors. They are based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security.