Financial Market Commentary

Monthly Market Commentary

April 2023 Edition

These monthly market commentaries share a synopsis of the U.S. financial markets with intelligent insights.

March was a month full of swings, misses, rallies and strikeouts.  Investors’ attention shifted from questions about whether the Fed would continue its rate increases to would it pause or even cut rates in response to the banking crisis that was quickly contained but not without causing pain.  The Fed stayed the course but acknowledged the elevated level of concern.  The bond market delivered positive returns, largely driven by the decline in rates as investors priced in the end of the Fed’s rate increases, though financial credit sectors sold off.   

Here are a few high-level comments on what occurred across the public investment markets during the month:


  • The S&P 500 was up 3.7% though much of the gain was driven by a small number of stocks.
  • The Bloomberg Aggregate Bond Index was up 2.5% as interest rates declined despite the Fed increase.  

Domestic Equity 

  • Equity markets were mixed during March, reflecting the challenging environment created by the banking crisis and the Fed's decision to raise interest rates to maintain its fight against inflation. 
  • Growth stocks continued their rally to start 2023 while value stocks were dragged down by financials.  Small caps lagged large caps due to their higher exposure to banks and energy.

International and Global Equities 

  • Foreign developed stocks performed in line with US markets, impacted by European banking issues and inflation pressures.
  • Emerging markets equities were up broadly in March after a sluggish start to 2023.  China's volatility settled down during the month with returns more in line with other markets. 

Fixed Income Markets 

  • The overall bond market rose though there was wider dispersion across sectors as Treasuries rallied despite the rate increase while Corporates responded to the banking crisis with a sell-off.

Specialty Markets 

  • REITs and Commodities have struggled for much of 2023 due to declining oil prices and rising interest rates.

US Equity Sectors

  • Sector performance in March reflected the mixed environment as a small number of Technology and Communications Services names rose higher while financials sold off sharply.


April 5, 2023

Dear Valued Investor,

The financial markets’ resilient performance during March was striking, despite pockets of uncertainty surrounding the strength of the economy—and not to mention concerns over the durability of the banking system. The ability of the market to navigate nearly two weeks of headline-related risk tested the underlying resolve of the market’s capacity to look ahead.

Moreover, it underpinned our conviction that despite setbacks, including bouts of volatility, we will see the beginnings of a new bull market emerge, especially as the Federal Reserve (Fed) winds down its campaign to quell inflation. By all indications, the Fed is edging closer to its final interest rate hike, which should help bolster bothconsumer and business confidence.

According to The Conference Board, consumer confidence inched slightly higher during March, reflecting a solid labor market with an unemployment rate of 3.6%—the lowest it has been in over 50 years. In addition, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) confidence index continued to climb higher in March, representing the third straight month of improvement. With mortgage rates tilting lower, sales of new homes began to pick up during the month, and many industry experts were commenting that the housing market may be on the cusp of “bottoming out.”

Certainly, the strains in the banking system jolted investor confidence and the market’s positive trajectory, but the quick response from government agencies—particularly the Fed’s lending facility, designed to help banks shore up their balance sheets quickly—helped restore calm in the market. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell echoed the reassuring words of many officials in the U.S. and abroad when he said the U.S. banking system “is sound and resilient with strong capital and liquidity,” and that “deposits are safe.”

Helping to further strengthen support in the country’s financial infrastructure, and ease investor anxiety, was the headline that First Citizens Bank would purchase “all of the deposits and loans” of Silicon Valley Bank, the bank that collapsed quickly and ignited a stretch of fear and panic across financial markets. With the private sector showing the value it sees in the ailing bank, we saw renewed optimism and faith in the overall banking system, and markets in general. First Citizens share price climbed 53% on the first trading day following the announcement, demonstrating the market’s confirmation that the deal made sense—and that the banking sector is safe.

Investors and traders alike were able to continue to find value in the market as stability returned. Investors’ patience was tested yet again, however, when Credit Suisse, a major global bank with a strong presence in the U.S., came under severe pressure. That situation was resolved quickly when Credit Suisse was seemingly instantaneously rescued by merging with its long-time rival, UBS.

Overall, patience and perseverance was rewarded as markets continued to factor in an increasingly realistic scenario of lower interest rates and a weaker U.S. dollar, which helps U.S. exporters compete in the global marketplace and helps soften overall financial conditions globally. It’s also important to keep in mind that it’s very rare for markets to suffer negative returns two years in a row. The unwinding of the technology bubble and the financial crisis that began in 2008 witnessed successive years of negative performance, but they represent anomalies.

The sound foundation of our financial system corroborates our constructive optimism of the upward and long-run trend of markets, despite headlines designed to jar nerves and test our steadfast resolution. As always, please reach out to me with any questions.


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Scott Krase
Wealth Manager
Connor & Gallagher OneSource (CGO)

Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA & SIPC.  Investment advisory services offered through Global Retirement Partners, LLC DBA Connor & Gallagher OneSource, an SEC registered investment advisor.  Connor & Gallagher OneSource and Connor & Gallagher Benefit Services are separate entities from LPL Financial.

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This material is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. There is no assurance that the views or strategies discussed are suitable for all investors or will yield positive outcomes. Investing involves risks including possible loss of principal. Any economic forecasts set forth may not develop as predicted and are subject to change.

References to markets, asset classes, and sectors are generally regarding the corresponding market index. Indexes are unmanaged statistical composites and cannot be invested into directly. Index performance is not indicative of the performance of any investment and do not reflect fees, expenses, or sales charges. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results.

All data is provided as of August 3, 2022.

All index data from FactSet.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (S&P500) is a capitalization-weighted index of 500 stocks designed to measure performance of the broad domestic economy through changes in the aggregate market value of 500 stocks representing all major industries.

Any company names noted herein are for educational purposes only and not an indication of trading intent or a solicitation of their products or services. Connor & Gallagher OneSource doesn’t provide research on individual equities. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however Connor & Gallagher OneSource makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy.

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