The S&P 500 Index achieved its third week in a row of positive returns thanks to a Friday session that managed to push the index 1.77 points higher than the previous Friday. The month of March finished on a sour note on Thursday as the index had its worst day in the past twenty and completed a March where the index completed its 13% correction and rallied almost 9% in the back half of the month. Investors responded positively to the disciplined approach by the Fed of raising rates by only a quarter point in the March meeting and proceeded to buy the dip on many beaten down growth names. Several of the FOMC board members expressed an interest in raising rates by 50bps increments in following meetings, including Fed Chair Jay Powell. The labor market continues to be tight with the March unemployment rate nearly reaching the pre-pandemic low of 3.5%.
The immediate reaction to an economic downturn is typically one of panic. You may have fears about losing your job, the rising costs of things,