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After a record closing high for the Nasdaq yesterday capping off eight straight days of gains, US equity futures are under some pressure this morning but off their lows from around 5:30 Eastern time. The culprits for the decline this morning are two-fold. First, concerns over rising COVID case counts in parts of the country are raising fears of renewed regional shutdowns in the US. The second and just as impactful catalyst this morning is news of $3.1 billion in proposed new US tariffs on EU imports of olives, beer, gin, and trucks and increased tariffs on aircraft, cheese, and yogurt. The downturn in US futures accelerated at the European open when news of the tariffs first hit the wires.
Be sure to check out today’s Morning Lineup for a rundown of the latest stock-specific news of note, a discussion of how current polling sees the outcome of this November’s election, European markets and data, global and national trends related to the COVID-19 outbreak, and much more.
If you’re like us, you’ve heard a lot of talk about how narrow the rally in equities has been lately. The five largest stocks in the S&P 500 account for what seems like a record share of the entire index, and the argument goes that if you don’t own those five stocks, you’re probably underperforming. That’s hardly the case.
Take the Nasdaq 100. Quarter to date, the index is up over 30%, and the five largest stocks in the US, which are all part of the index (Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet, and Facebook), have rallied an average of 37% with gains ranging from 25.99% for Alphabet to 45.23% for Facebook, So yes, these five stocks are collectively outperforming the index. What’s also important to note, however, is that of the remaining 95 stocks in the index, 18 have a better QTD performance than all five of them. That doesn’t exactly strike us as a narrow rally.
The table below lists the 18 stocks in the Nasdaq 100 that are outperforming Facebook (the top-performing of the ‘fab-five’) so far this quarter. Leading the way higher, MercadoLibre (MELI) has doubled, while another three stocks are up over 80%.