With the first half winding down to a close, Summer is in full swing as July 4th quickly approaches. While the days leading up to or after July 4th are usually on the quiet side with many people taking vacations, for the stock market, it is usually a relatively positive week. The chart below shows the S&P 500’s performance during the July 4th week measuring performance from the Friday before July 4th until the Friday after. In years where July 4th falls on a Friday or Saturday, we measure the S&P 500’s performance in the week leading up to July 4th.
For the July 4th week, going back to 1969, the S&P 500 has seen an average gain of 0.32% with positive returns 60% of the time. In the charts below, we have also included green shading in years where the S&P 500 was up 10%+ in the first half (as it is this year). In those years, returns during the July 4th week have been much better with an average gain of 0.93% and positive returns 79% of the time. In fact, the last time the S&P 500 was down during the July 4th week in a year where the S&P 500 was up 10%+ in the first half was in 1986!
Similar to the July 4th week, the day before July 4th has also historically been positive but not nearly to the same degree. On those days, the S&P 500 has averaged a gain of 0.04% with positive returns only slightly more than half of the time (54%). In years where the S&P 500 was up over 10% in the first half, the day before July 4th is considerably better, averaging a gain of 0.17% with gains 64% of the time.
With people out celebrating the July 4th holiday, the hangover sets in after. As shown below, the average S&P 500 change on the trading day after July 4th is a decline of 0.18% with gains only 42% of the time. In years when the S&P 500 was up over 10% in the first half, the declines aren’t as bad, but at -0.12% and gains only half of the time, they aren’t positive either. This year the day after July 4th will also feature the June Non-Farm Payrolls report. That will be fun! Start a two-week free trial to Bespoke Institutional to access our Seasonality Database and much more.