Narrow Leadership Isn't Always Bearish

Many have cited this year’s equity gains as artificial because the top stocks in major indices like the S&P 500 are responsible for a lot of the heavy lifting.

But that doesn’t mean the outlook for equities is bearish. A recent note from Bespoke Research puts this year’s trend in important context.

They find that “the YTD performance spread between the market-cap-weighted S&P 500 and its equal-weighted counterpart is among the widest ever seen on a YTD basis through the end of April.”

The YTD performance gap is the second widest since 1990, “trailing only the 6.8% percentage point gap in 2020.”

What’s more interesting is the SPX went on to gain over 20% through the rest of the year in both of those prior instances. Here’s a look at the SPX’s performance from the end of Q1 through the rest of the year.

Obviously this is a small sample size, but it makes you think twice about the naysayers who disregard this year’s top-heavy outperformance thus far.

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