Monthly markets review - February 2017
An overview of markets in February 2017 when equities drew support from generally improving macroeconomic data.
- Global equity markets made gains in February. Investors were again encouraged by widespread improvement in global economic data.
- US equities performed very well. President Trump promised a “phenomenal” tax plan, although further details are yet to emerge. Expectations rose that US interest rates would soon increase.
- In the eurozone, encouraging macroeconomic data supported equity gains. All sectors aside from financials registered positive returns.
- UK equities were supported by a variety of factors, including robust corporate results, M&A activity, and positive macroeconomic data. Sterling weakness was a further tailwind.
- Japanese equities posted positive returns, supported by a generally encouraging results season for corporates.
- Emerging market equities recorded a positive return in February and outperformed developed markets. A number of emerging markets benefited from currency strength.
- February proved positive for global sovereign and corporate bonds. The most notable exception was shorter-dated US Treasuries, which were relatively weak, though the 10-year index gained.