Some tumultuous weeks ahead

10/16/2020 | 09:48am

Wall Street is slightly up today. Yesterday, US markets performed much better than European ones, closing with a moderate (-0.72% for the Nasdaq) to very moderate (-0.15% for the S&P500) decline. On the Old Continent, contractions exceeded 2% almost everywhere, with fears caused by partial lockdowns.

The last weeks of 2020 are shaping up to be particularly tumultuous, with the American presidential election, the verdict of several clinical studies on Covid-19 vaccines, Black Friday, Cyber Monday and so on. The earnings season continues with both good and bad news. For example, last night, the quarterly results of Daimler and LVMH were judged positive by markets, because the former did not lose any money and the latter recorded a 7% decline in sales in the third quarter, after a 28% decline in the first half of the year. We will have to wait until next weekend to be able to draw up an initial evocative assessment, since hundreds of companies, including some of the largest in the world, will be releasing their figures. Given the atmosphere, companies exposed to the theme of "physical distancing" will still have a bright future ahead of them.

Yesterday was the second debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden, with each candidate seemingly on a different planet. According to a study by Vanguard comparing two portfolios weighted 60% in equities and 40% in government bonds, there is no significant difference in the performance of those portfolio whether the tenant of the White House is a Democrat or a Republican. During Republican, the portfolio's performance reached 8.2%. Portfolio performance averages 8.4% under Democratic presidencies.

The final inflation figures for September in Europe were released earlier today. Prices contracted by -0.3%, as in the previous month. Adjusted for the most volatile products, prices rose by 0.2%. The monetary measures of the ECB as well as the budgetary measures of the states do not seem to succeed in bringing back inflation.

Today on the agenda, we have U.S., Retail Sales, Industrial Production, Business Inventories and the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index.


Romain Fournier
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