The fourth quarter of 2016 will be remembered as the time Donald Trump shocked the world by being elected to become the 45th President of the United States, prompting the “Trump Trade.” U.S. equity markets sored after the initial panic subsided. Following the election, the S&P 500 closed the year on a +4.6% rally, which helped propel the index to a +3.82% return for the quarter.
U.S. equities rallied during the quarter as economic optimism grew around President-elect Trump’s policy agenda including an increase in infrastructure spending, deregulation, and lower taxes. Financials lead the way, as talk of deregulation and interest rate hikes created a tailwind for the sector. Investors also benefited by going small on the market cap spectrum due to concerns over Trump’s stance on trade and protectionism, resulting in the Russell Mid Cap Value index returning +5.52%. Below are some of the strategies that make up the Mid Cap Value PSN Top Guns.
A weakened Euro dampened the returns for U.S. dollar-based investors as international equities, measured by the MSCI EAFE index, finished the quarter -0.7%. Political turmoil throughout the Eurozone weighed on equity markets, while continued economic stimulus by the European Central Bank and an increase in investor optimism over the global economy provided support. The following strategies made the PSN Top Guns list for the EAFE Universe.
The fourth quarter was volatile for U.S. fixed income, as investors rotated out of fixed income and into equities on the expectations that economic growth and inflation would increase as the Federal Reserve voiced a hawkish tone. The potential for lower taxes and increase in infrastructure spending hurt municipals, as the Bloomberg Barclays Municipal index fell -3.62% during the quarter. Below are some of the strategies that make up the PSN Top Guns Municipals Universe.