Stocks notched solid gains in the second quarter with the S&P 500 advancing 3.8%. Halfway through 2019, the index has risen 17%, its best first half of the year since 1997.
Equities overcame a trade fight with China and finished in the green, extending a more than decade-long bull market for stocks and erasing steep losses that jarred investors at the end of last year.
The second quarter saw an extension of the volatility that has plagued the stock market since October. The bulk of the market’s gains occurred during April after positive news on earnings and China trade. In May, markets slumped following a breakdown in trade talks. But the Fed stepped in to boost markets in early June by hinting at a possible interest rate cut if conditions deteriorate.
During the quarter, more than 60% of the companies in the S&P 500 rose, with technology firms notching some of the biggest gains. Shares of smaller companies, which are typically touted as safe havens during turmoil overseas, lagged behind broader indexes, a move some blamed on fears that the U.S. economy’s growth is cooling. The benchmark small-capitalization index Russell 2000 rose 1.7% in the second quarter.
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Notes: The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) is a price-weighted index composed of 30 widely traded blue-chip U.S. common stocks. The S&P 500 is a market-cap weighted index composed of the common stocks of 500 leading companies in leading industries of the U.S. economy. The NASDAQ Composite Index is a market-value weighted index of all common stocks listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange. The Russell 2000 is a market-cap weighted index composed of 2000 U.S. small-cap common stocks. The Global Dow is an equally weighted index of 150 widely traded blue-chip common stocks worldwide. Market indexes listed are unmanaged and are not available for direct investment.