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Oct 03, 2023

September 2023

Stocks continued to decline in September as the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 3.4%, the S&P 500 slipped 4.8%, and the NASDAQ ended 5.8% lower. Around the world, Emerging Markets were down 2.6%, and EAFE sank 3.4%. September’s declines dragged equities into the red for Q3. The Dow posted a 2.1% decline in Q3, the S&P 500 ended the quarter down 3.3%, and the NASDAQ 3.9% finished lower.

For the second straight month, Energy was the only US stock sector to post a positive return. Real Estate was the top laggard in September, tumbling 7.2%.

Regular gas prices topped $4 per gallon national average for the first time since October 2022. The higher gas prices resulted from a surge in crude oil prices. WTI crude oil briefly reached $90 per barrel in September–the first time since November 2022–while the price of Brent surged 7.7% to $94.01. Mortgage rates reached 20-year highs last month and pushed even higher in September. The 30-year mortgage rate surpassed 7% for the first time since April 2002.

Yields on longer-term treasuries increased in September as T-Bills ended the month broadly unchanged. The 20-year and 30-year bonds each rose by 53 basis points. The 10-year’s 50 basis point increase helped reduce the inverted 10-2 treasury yield spread to -0.44%. Yields on global fixed-income instruments rose as well. Italy’s Long-Term Interest Rate surged 74 basis points, Canada’s 10-Year Benchmark Bond Yield jumped by 53 basis points, and Japan’s 10 Year Government Bond now yields 0.77%, an increase of 11 basis points.

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