The stock market had a strong month in July.
Stocks rallied last month with its best performance since November 2020. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 3%, the S&P 500 Index added 4.3%, and the Nasdaq Composite Index surged 4.7%.
Of the 56% of S&P 500 companies that have reported earnings so far, more than half have beaten estimates, above the long-term average of 47%.
Amazon and Apple were among the best-performing stocks in July. Amazon was up more than 27%, while Apple jumped 18%. Despite the strong performances, some investors remain cautious, warning that the recent rally could undo itself just as quickly.
“I think we are going to go through a tough time in the second half of the year, where the economic data continues to show growth eroding and inflation might not come down as fast as people are hoping,” says CIBC CIO David Donabedian.
Investors pushed the S&P 500 down more than 8% in June, ahead of the current crop of earnings results, and the index remains around 14% below its January peak. Some investors also said that there is a willingness to keep buying stocks while inflation is so high because other, safer assets do not offer the returns that allow them to defend against the eroding effect of rising prices, reports The New York Times writer Joe Rennison.
“I am not as sanguine as the market seems to be,” says New York Life Investments economist Lauren Goodwin. “But running for the hills when inflation is so high is just a drag on returns. We have to stay invested.”