Over the past several weeks, we’ve seen daily stories about the United States’ “debt ceiling” and whether the US might default on its debt. We’ve been working on a debt-ceiling explainer, but a recent conversation with a client has changed our focus.
Last quarter saw the bear market continue. Global stocks went down almost 7%¹ and US bonds lost almost 5%.² We’ve seen several positive indicators, but war, inflation and a potential recession have battered the markets. Recently a client asked me, given the bear market and bad news, “How can you be so calm?” In the moment, I said something to the effect of, “It’s a combination of belief and experience.” Since that conversation, however, I’ve been thinking more about the question, particularly in light of the “Bear Market Toolkit” we released last quarter.
Markets were not kind to investors during the first quarter. Global stocks dipped almost 5.5%.1 Most all equity asset classes were down: US stocks dropped just over 4.5%, developed-foreign markets lost almost 6% and emerging markets went down almost 7%.2 In fact, across the major equity classes, we saw only two positive results.