At the end of 2018, economists and journalists may look back on the second quarter and see the moment when a global trade war began.
Stocks rallied in January, corrected in February, and slumped in March as volatility and economic policy changes took some of the enthusiasm out of the market.
The final quarter of 2017 was a great one for stocks: the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and Nasdaq Composite all posted 3-month gains of better than 6%. Landmark federal tax reforms were approved and signed into law. Bitcoin was welcomed to two major futures exchanges, and it surged and plunged crazily.
Encouraging economic data and a series of unsettling news headlines vied for Wall Street’s attention in the third quarter, and ultimately, investors were not shaken.
After a remarkable first quarter, the stock market cooled off slightly in Q2 – but investors still saw substantial gains. Strong earnings helped take Wall Street’s collective mind off a decidedly mixed bag of economic signals.
The opening quarter of 2017 was a historic one for Wall Street as the Dow Jones Industrial Average topped 20,000 for the first time. Equities rallied through January and February, then lost momentum in March; even so, the S&P 500 had gained 5.53% YTD when the quarter ended.