Market Commentary

Market Commentary

Each week the LPL Financial Research team assembles thoughtful insight on market news. Get stock market updates from top LPL Financial research strategists. Stay up-to-date on financial market trends and understand stock market predictions.

Playbook for a Fed Pivot: Exploring Equity and Fixed Income Market Performance

November 21, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Recent inflation data has tempered expectations for future Federal Reserve tightening, including a potential peak in the terminal rate near 5.0% in May or June of 2023. While the market has welcomed this news, history suggests the path to a Fed pivot could be volatile for stocks due to elevated inflation and interest rate risk. In this week’s Weekly Market Commentary, we explore historical equity and fixed income market performance surrounding a Fed pivot, including the prospect for solid stock performance in the back half of 2023.

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Inflation and Rising Rates Supports Value

November 14, 2022   |   LPL Research
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The growth vs. value debate has been pretty one-sided in 2022, with value outperforming growth for a sustained period for the first time in almost 15 years. However, the debate is heating up as investors begin to consider whether the pendulum will swing back to growth if inflation and interest rates decline in 2023. In this week’s Weekly Market Commentary we look at the factors driving value’s 2022 outperformance, the technical trading setup for growth and value, and what to look for in the coming months.

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How Midterm Elections May Move Markets

November 8, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Midterm elections are upon us, with Election Day on Tuesday. Republicans are strongly favored to win the House, and the Senate is roughly a tossup. We believe either outcome would be market-friendly, although the bigger market driver will likely be central banks’ efforts to tame inflation. In this week’s Weekly Market Commentary, we look at why the stock market may respond favorably to the midterm election, whatever the outcome.

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Federal Reserve Preview: TRICK or Treat?

October 31, 2022   |   LPL Research
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With a series of important economic indicators suggesting the economy is declining and inflation is finally decelerating, albeit very slowly, markets are beginning to factor in that the Fed may soon transition to a less aggressive stance in early 2023. Here we preview this week’s Fed meeting and discuss whether investors will get a trick or a treat.

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Three Things to Know About Recessions: The 3 D’s

October 24, 2022   |   LPL Research
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If the U.S. economy enters a recession, the causes and potential outcome will be hotly debated. At LPL Research, our starting point is always looking at history. This week’s commentary will remind us of three things we know about historical recessions.

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Low Bar for Earnings Season Brings Third Quarter Expectations Down

October 17, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Expectations are very low for this earnings season. The challenges are many, with intense cost pressures and slowing economic growth at the top of the list. The chorus of analysts and strategists calling for big cuts to estimates has gotten louder. Expect estimates to come down, but not collapse. Here we take a look at whether expectations are low enough as we preview third quarter earnings season. 

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Pockets of Vulnerability Magnified by Monetary Policy

October 10, 2022   |   LPL Research
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As Federal Reserve (Fed) officials continue to emphasize the Fed’s commitment towards restoring price stability, the dollar marches ever higher. Markets are currently pricing in another 75-basis point rate hike at the November 2 Fed meeting as calls for the Fed to halt its aggressive campaign are mounting. Worries persist that tightening financial conditions, underpinned by a stronger dollar, will lead to deeper cracks within the global financial system.

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Markets on Watch as Xi Jinping’s Influence to be Tested in October

October 3, 2022   |   LPL Research
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On October 16, China will begin its 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party in Beijing. This plenum is especially significant because it is expected that President Xi Jinping will be granted an unprecedented third term, something that he set in motion in 2018 when term limits were abolished. 

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Better Times Ahead

September 28, 2022   |   LPL Research
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In the last several weeks, we have continued to face elevated uncertainty in financial markets due to high inflation and rising interest rates, and we thought it was an important time to take stock with the final quarter of 2022 just ahead.

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Why It May Be Time to Take Advantage of Higher Yields

September 26, 2022   |   LPL Research
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The LPL Research Strategic and Tactical Asset Allocation Committee is increasing its recommended interest rate exposure in its tactical allocation from underweight to neutral. Now that interest rates have moved substantially higher, we believe opportunities in fixed income have improved and are looking to add back to certain areas within fixed income that may benefit. 

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How Much Higher Can Rates Go?

September 19, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Inflationary dynamics continue to surprise to the upside, and markets now expect the Fed to pursue one of its most aggressive rate hiking campaign in years. U.S. Treasury yields continue to move higher as well. We think we’ve seen the biggest moves higher in yields, but as long as inflationary pressures continue to surprise to the upside, interest rate volatility will likely remain. We still think the 10-year Treasury yield can end the year between 2.75%-3.25%, but we acknowledge there are risks to the upside.

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Getting Jobs Market Back into Balance

September 12, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Federal Reserve Chairman Jay Powell reiterated his warning that getting inflation under control will require some pain. Powell is likely making these warnings based on the arcane, clunky relationship between inflation and unemployment. The key to getting the market back into balance is a bigger labor force, and the economy is starting to experience a larger labor force as individuals come off the sidelines and rejoin the job market.

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The Best and Worst of Times

September 7, 2022   |   LPL Research
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When it comes to stock market performance, August was “the best of times, and the worst of times.” The strong market rally that peaked in mid-August was viewed by many analysts as a transition from a bear to bull market, based on the surge in breadth that stocks enjoyed and the magnitude of the two-month rally that began in mid-June totaling 17%.

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September’s Calendar Cruelty for Stocks

September 6, 2022   |   LPL Research
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The difficult 2022 for stocks may not get much easier because as we now wait for better news on the inflation front, we have to contend with a seasonally weak month of September. While we got some welcome news in Friday’s jobs report, more evidence of falling inflation will take time to materialize. The good news is a seasonally strong fourth quarter is right around the corner. If history is a guide, midterm elections may provide an added late-year boost.

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Earnings Recap: Still Hanging In There

August 31, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Earnings growth of 6-7% doesn’t sound very exciting, but given the challenges corporate America has faced, we consider the nearly-complete second quarter earnings season a resounding success. The numerous challenges last quarter included a slowing economy, intensifying inflation pressures, ongoing global supply chain disruptions, and a surging U.S. dollar. Still, corporate America delivered the type of upside investors have grown accustomed to in much easier economic environments.

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Home Sales Fall (Again). What’s Next?

August 22, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Existing home sales fell 5.9% in July, the sixth consecutive month of declines as higher interest rates weigh on housing affordability and prospective buyers. As the housing market slowed, so did prices. The median price for a single family home was $410,600, a decline of roughly $10,000 from June. However, homes do not stay on the market long. Over the last two months, homes were on the market for an average of only 14 days, three days shorter than a year ago.

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Is This the Start of a New Bull Market?

August 15, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Investors cheered the two better-than-expected inflation reports last week, pushing the S&P 500 to 16% above its June 16 low and only 11% below its all-time high. After this rebound, the key question investors are asking is whether this is a bear market rally that will soon fizzle or the start of a new bull market. There’s too much uncertainty to have a high conviction view right now, but we do believe the odds have risen that a new bull market has begun.

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The Case for a U.S. Recession Weakens

August 08, 2022   |   LPL Research
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The market pundits remain intensely focused on the question of whether the U.S. economy is in or about to enter recession, so we thought a piece on what a recession might mean for the stock market would be of interest. While Friday’s strong jobs report provides more evidence that the U.S. economy is not currently in recession, odds are still perhaps a coin flip or better that one may come in the next year. Here we update changing recession prospects and what that might mean for stocks.

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What a Week for the Stock Market

August 01, 2022   |   LPL Research
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That was quite a week. These days a Federal Reserve (Fed) policy meeting alone gets a lot of headlines and has market participants on the edge of their seats. Add to that the second straight quarter of negative gross domestic product (GDP) growth that exacerbated recession fears, the busiest week of earnings season, and important but sometimes under-the-radar inflation data, and last week was epic for market watchers. Here’s the good news: Markets liked it.

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3 Factors That Could Change the Inflation Course

July 25, 2022   |   LPL Research
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For the past year, supply-related problems contributed more to inflation than demand-related imbalances, but that may be changing soon. There are at least three factors that could change the course of inflation. First, the improvement in shipping and general supply bottlenecks could ease inflation. Second, strength in the U.S. dollar could offset some of the current inflationary pressures. And third, import prices have moderated since the beginning of 2022 and as import prices slow, we expect consumer prices to eventually reflect the slowdown in import prices. 

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Managing Market Volatility

July 18, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Markets rarely give us clear skies, and there are always threats to watch for on the horizon, but the right preparation, context, and support can help us navigate anything that may lie ahead. So far, this year hasn’t seen a full-blown crisis like 2008–2009 or 2020, but the ride has been very bumpy. We may not be flying into a storm, but there’s been plenty of volatility the first part of 2022. How businesses, households, and central banks steer through the rough air will set the tone for markets over the second half of 2022.

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LPL Financial Research Midyear Outlook 2022: Navigating Turbulence

July 12, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Markets rarely give us clear skies, and there are always threats to watch for on the horizon, but the right preparation, context, and support can help us navigate anything that may lie ahead. So far, this year hasn’t seen a full-blown crisis like 2008–2009 or 2020, but the ride has been very bumpy. We may not be flying into a storm, but there’s been plenty of turbulence the first part of 2022. How businesses, households, and central banks steer through the rough air will set the tone for markets over the second half of 2022.

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Constructive, Not Complacent: Lowering S&P 500 Target

July 5, 2022   |   LPL Research
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Stocks have been unable to make up much ground since the June 16 lows, with a bear market rally amounting to only around a 4.3% gain in the S&P 500 Index since then (as of July 1). After the more than 6% rally the week of June 24 and the increasing optimism that came with that bounce, stocks pulled back again last week—the 11th down week for the index in the past 13 weeks. While we acknowledge that a V-shaped recovery is probably not in the cards and prior valuation targets no longer appear achievable, we remain constructive on equities for the second half, but not complacent.

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Relief at the Pump and for Portfolios?

June 27, 2022   |   LPL Research
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2022 has been rough all-around for the American consumer. Not only are we battling decades-high inflation, but investors’ portfolios are off to one of the worst starts to a year in history as we near the halfway point. Our technical work is first and foremost rooted in trend following, and the trend in both stock and bond prices so far this year have of course been down. However, one trend that has been strongly higher is energy prices. It may be early, but we see some potential signs that energy trends could be changing, which would not only have positive implications for consumers’ wallets, but also potentially investors’ investment portfolios.

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Bear Market Q and A

June 22, 2022   |   LPL Research
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The bear market that started on June 13 has left the S&P 500 Index 23.5% below its January 3 high. After the initial positive reaction to the Federal Reserve’s first 0.75% rate hike since 1994 and tough talk on inflation, heightened fears of recession and that the Fed might “break something” sent stocks down for the 10th week out of 11 for only the second time in history (The first was in 1970). To help investors manage through this difficult period, we answer some of the top questions we’re getting about bear markets and list some things to watch to assess progress toward an eventual durable low.

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A Bear Market is Officially Here

June 14, 2022   |   LPL Research
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A bear market is officially here thanks largely to stubbornly high inflation. For many of us, it has probably felt like a bear market for a while now, but the S&P 500 Index didn’t close more than 20% below its January 3 record high until Monday. Tech stocks are down a lot more—the Nasdaq Composite is more than 32% below its November 2021 record high.

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