October 2020 Market Update

After five straight months of solid gains for the four indexes we follow, each one of them finished down for the month in September, off from 2 to 5 percent. That still leaves the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ up for the year (4% and 24% respectively), while the Dow and Russell 2000 are still in the red for 2020 (-2% and -9%). Our managed accounts had exited the market on September 8th, so we didn’t have to suffer all the value decline that the stock market did. All of our indicators turned back to the positive position on September 29, so we re-entered the stock market on September 30. Our managed accounts are actively managed and rules based. We’ve had a few clients call to inquire how they were invested. Most were happy to be on the sidelines with their money when we told them. They may be uncomfortable with our re-entering point now, but we need to follow the research and follow the rules we have put in place. It would be fool-hearty to invest according to our ‘feelings.’ To be honest, as you’ll read in the My View column below, I feel a little pessimistic. The political parties are so rancorous right now, there’s a terrible fight brewing over the Supreme Court nominee, many of the once-beautiful downtowns in our large cities look like ISIS was just there, wildfires are burning up some of California’s most valuable wine-producing countryside, and we’re still having to keep the country partially closed due to the worldwide COVID pandemic. So what’s to be happy about? Well, as it turns out, we have a lot to be happy about. Most of us still have our health and our wealth. Most of us can go back to church, though it’s probably a good idea to wear a mask. There’s a vaccine for COVID in the works coming much sooner than we ever thought possible. The election will soon be over. The battle for the Supreme Court will be decided in a few weeks. And most (if not all) the people who loved us at the beginning of the year still do. While some of our clients have suffered devastating losses to COVID and to an airplane crash, we believers know Who is still in charge. And that’s the best news. All of us here at ProVest so appreciate your confidence and trust in us. We wouldn’t be here, except for you. Have a great October.