While the S&P 500 made a new high for the first time in 35 trading days yesterday, many of the characteristics of the groups driving the rally have shifted.  To highlight this, in the table below we summarize the ten best and worst performing S&P 500 Industries from the close on 4/30 through yesterday.  During that 35 trading day stretch, 34 Industries saw positive returns while another 27 declined.

Industries that have seen the biggest gains between the two new highs are primarily defensive in nature as all but three come from sectors that are typically considered defensive (Consumer Staples, Health Care, and Real Estate).  Health Care has been the real star of the show, though.  Of the sector’s six different industries, four of them made the top ten!

On the downside, cyclical industries have dominated the weak side.  When industries like Semis, Autos, Construction & Engineering, and Air Freight are lagging the market, it really illustrates the presence of economic concerns. Leading the way lower, Energy Equipment and Services declined over 10%, followed by Semiconductors which were down just under 10% after failing at resistance on Thursday for the third time in a month.  These two industries are followed by two industries (Tobacco and Power and Renewable Energy) that come from sectors that are traditionally considered defensive, but they have their own specific issues to deal with.  Start a two-week free trial to Bespoke Institutional to access our interactive tools and much more.

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