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September Almanac: Only Modest Improvement in Election Years

Start of business year, end of summer vacations, and back to school made September a leading barometer month in first 60 years of 20th century, now portfolio managers back after Labor Day tend to clean house, notes Jeff Hirsch, editor, Almanac Investor.

Since 1950, September is the worst performing month of the year for DJIA, S&P 500, Nasdaq (since 1971) and Russell 1000 (since 1979). Sizable gains in September 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2017 have lifted Russell 2000 to second worst (since 1979). September was creamed four years straight from 1999-2002 after four solid years from 1995-1998 during the bubble buildup.

Bullish election-year forces do little to improve on September’s poor overall performance over the same time frame. September’s performance does improve slightly in election years, but it is still negative nearly across the board. Only the Russell 1000 and Russell 2000 have been able to escape negative territory and post modest 0.2% and 0.8% average gains respectively in the last ten election year Septembers.

Editor’s Note: Sign up today for a FREE 7-Day Trial to Almanac Investor to get a full run down of seasonal tendencies that occur throughout each month of the year in an easy-to-read calendar graphic with important economic release dates highlighted. Free trial includes Current Stock & ETF Portfolios. Last 30 Days of Member Only Alerts. Detailed Market Analysis. New ETF and/or Stock trade ideas with specific buy limits and stop losses.

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