After a dismal January, the S&P 500 Index posted a 5.5 percent gain in February--the largest monthly gain since October 2011. Investors saw a steady rise throughout the month in response to positive geopolitical news and lower volatility in oil prices.
Central Banks around the world have remained highly accommodative which is providing a boost to equity markets. The European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-anticipated monetary stimulus package and markets were largely boosted in February from crude oil. Brent crude oil futures broke a 7 month losing streak by posting an 18 percent gain in February--the largest monthly gain since May 2009.
The first few months of 2015 have seen volatility. According to Bob Pisani at CNBC the S&P 500 has been up 5 percent or more in a month only 10 times since the financial crisis of 2009. In 9 of those 10 times, the following month is up on average just under 2.5 percent. If history has anything to say, volatility will continue, but this market may still have a ways to go.
Ethan Wade, Financial Advisor
(This article contains the current opinions of the author but not necessarily those of Brighton Securities Corp. The author's opinions are subject to change without notice. This blog post is for informational purposes only. Forecasts, estimates, and certain information contained herein should not be considered as investment advice or a recommendation of any particular security, strategy or investment product. References to specific securities and their issuers are for illustrative purposes only and are not intended and should not be interpreted as recommendations to purchase or sell such securities).