Significant Volatility Churns Markets in 2016

Strong equity returns in March brought the market back to where it started the year - but it has been a bumpy ride for investors in major global stock markets

Robert Johnson, CFA 18 April, 2016 | 3:27PM
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Equity markets have gone almost nowhere year to date. Emerging markets have done the best, gaining about 5%, and Japan the worst, down about 7%. Europe was also down but by a smaller amount, and the U.S. S&P 500 has returned about 2% year to date. However, that relative calm belies some powerful volatility.

The Fed indicated that two interest rate rises were likely in 2016, instead of the previous four

Rough Start to 2016

From the beginning of 2016 to February 11, almost all major equity markets and commodity markets received a beating ranging from 7% to 11% declines. Equity markets were driven down by worries about collapsing energy prices and the potential impact on oil companies, their lenders, and financial market participants more generally.

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About Author

Robert Johnson, CFA  is director of economic analysis with Morningstar.

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