Aside from the usual year-end holiday cheer, the market finally got what it wanted from the Fed last week. DJIA climbed above 37,000 to a new all-time closing high while S&P 500 was just 1.6% from its all-time high as of last week, explains Jeff Hirsch, editor of The Stock Trader’s Almanac.
NASDAQ, hit the hardest in last year’s bear market, has more ground to recover. But it was less than 10% away from its all-time high, too. S&P 500 could easily eclipse its old highwater mark before year end and NASDAQ will likely do the same next year, possibly early in Q1.
In the above chart, we have plotted the same four seasonal patterns that are in the 2024 Almanac on page 11 using S&P 500 data (please note, NASDAQ data begins in 1971). When compared to the longer history of S&P 500, NASDAQ’s patterns are very similar to S&P 500.
The most bullish scenario is when there is a sitting president running for re-election. In those years, NASDAQ has averaged a full-year gain of 19.14%. This is much stronger than the 12.73% average gain in all years and the 8.87% average advance in all election years.
Pre-election year-end strength also continues into January and February of election years. We maintain our bullish outlook for the balance of the year.