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Friday, December 19, 2014

Year End 2014

2014 slipping by, another year to be retired,
Let’s review what we have seen, what really has transpired.
The year started out so cold, we learned a phrase called polar vortex,
That chilled us to our bones, and brain froze our frontal cortex.
Another chilling event, was the ebola epidemic,
Concerns about its spread, were more than merely academic.
Democrats took a beating, in this year’s mid-term elections,
As the right wing took the Senate, handing incumbents their ejections.

Give me Crimea for an appetizer, said the grabby Vladimir Putin,
For dessert some eastern Ukraine, as I continue with my lootin’.
Shooting down a Malaysian plane, was clearly this year’s biggest error,
While Islamic State emerged, as this year’s biggest terror.
Boko Haram was close behind, with their heinous kidnap attack,
Many have now forgotten, that the girls have still not been brought back.
A Pakistani school, another of this year’s horror scenes,
Resulting in the death, of a hundred innocent teens.

Farewell we said to others, their absence gives us shivers,
The world is laughing less, without our friend Joan Rivers.
We miss you Robin Williams, hysterical and looney,
Goodbye to Shirley Temple, goodbye to Mickey Rooney.
Godspeed to Maya Angelou, her poetry so sublime,
Casey Kasem left us too, up the charts he made us climb.
Philip Seymour Hoffman, each role played with finesse,
Oscar de la Renta, who showed us how to dress.

The big story in the markets, was the mighty US dollar,
If you were long against the Ruble, you’re a wealthy FX scholar.
The BOJ continued easing, causing the Yen to take a tumble,
Though in the end the Abenomics, may yet fall apart and crumble.
The Fed wrapped up the taper, though the ten year rate went lower,
As the expansion and inflation, proceeded to grow slower.
Two nasty falls from grace, that took most by surprise,
Crude oil and the bond king, both well off of their highs.

Meanwhile in the stocks, M&A was all the rage,
With healthcare deal inversions, taking center stage.
Actavis snatched up Allergan, Medtronic bought Covidien,
All boosting banker bonuses, by a couple of hundred million.
Google built a Nest, Suntory swallowed Beam,
Apple boogied to the Beats, Ballmer bought the LA team.
Facebook said What’sApp?, Comcast hooked up with Time Warner,
Halliburton took Baker Hughes, DirecTV’s in Ma Bell’s corner.

If you missed the market rally, if you took a hit on Shire,
Stay calm and please don’t panic, things are not so very dire.
If your returns are flat or down, though this makes you quite frustrated,
Take solace in the fact, your returns are not correlated.
Look at the bigger picture, even if your performance makes you vomit,
The European NASA, put a spacecraft on a comet.
The holidays are here, may the New Year bring you luck,
Things are looking up already, Obama’s a lame duck.

Monday, December 1, 2014

November 2014 - Monthly Market Commentary

November saw a continuation of recent market trends, with the US dollar strengthening, oil continuing its selloff, and global equity markets moving higher.  The oil price weakness was punctuated at month end by the meeting of OPEC, which decided not to cut production, leading to an acceleration in the energy market selloff.    The US monthly jobs report showed continued steady job growth, with employers adding 214,000 jobs in October and the unemployment rate falling to 5.8%.  While developed market central banks made no major policy changes in November, the People’s Bank of China cut interest rates for the first time in more than two years.

Global M&A activity showed renewed strength in November.  Notable announced deals included Laboratory Corp.’s $6.1 billion acquisition of Covance, Publicis’ $3.7 billion purchase of Sapient, Sterling Bancorp’s $539 million merger with Hudson Valley Holding Corp., Carlyle Group’s $700 million acquisition of Dealogic, Perrigo’s $4.5 billion acquisition of Omega Pharma, Cott’s $1.25 purchase of DSS Group, BB&T’s $2.5 billion acquisition of Susquehanna Bancshares, Berkshire Hathaway’s $4.7 billion purchase of Duracell from Procter & Gamble, Halliburton’s $34.6 billion acquisition of Baker Hughes, Actavis’ $66 billion purchase of Allergan, Kotak Mahindra’s $2.4 billion acquisition of ING Vysya Bank, Aviva’s $8.8 billion purchase of Friends Life Group, and RenaissanceRe’s $1.9 billion acquisition of Platinum Underwriters.
Developed market equity markets largely rose in November (see page 8).  Germany (+6.9%), Japan (+6.2%) and France (+4%) saw the biggest gains; Australia (-3.5%) was lower on the month.  US small caps underperformed, with the Russell 2000 up 0.1%, while the Russell 1000 was up 2.6% (see page 3).  Consumer Staples (+5.5%), Consumer Discretionary (+5.4%), and Information Technology (+5.3%) were the best performing US sectors, while Energy (-8.5%), Telecom (+1.2%) and Utilities (+1.2%) were the worst performing (see page 2).  Large cap growth (+3.2%) outperformed large cap value (+2%) in November (see page 3).  Emerging Market equities were mixed in November (see page 9), with the biggest gains in Taiwan (+3.2%), India (+2.7%), and Thailand (+2.1%) and the biggest losses in Malaysia (-2.1%), Mexico (-1.6%), and Argentina (-1.2%). 
In currencies, the USD Index strengthened 1.7% in November (see page 10).  The weakest developed market currencies against the USD were the Japanese Yen (-5.3%), the Norwegian Krone (-4%) and the Australian Dollar (-3.3%).  The USD was stronger against emerging market currencies with the biggest gains against the Russian Ruble (-14.7%), Brazilian Real (-3.7%), and the Korean Won (-3.5%).
The US Treasury yield curve flattened in November (see page 12).  10 year rates closed the month at 2.16%, down from 2.34% at October month end.  Investment grade and high yield credit spreads tightened in November (see page 13).
In commodities, the GSCI index fell 10.9% in November (see page 11), with losses in Energy (-15.7%), Industrial Metals (-3.1%), and Precious Metals (-0.2%); gains were seen in Agriculture (+0.4%) and Livestock (+0.9%).  Within individual commodities, Brent Crude led losses (-18.9%), followed by Crude Oil (-17.8%), Gasoline (-14.2%), and Heating Oil (-13.4%); Wheat (+7.2%), Natural Gas (+3.1%), Palladium (+2.6%), and Feeder Cattle (+1.1%) gained; Gold gained 0.3%.
Contact CurAlea Associates for a Daily Market Review.

Monday, November 3, 2014

October 2014 - Monthly Market Commentary


October was a month of heightened volatility across asset classes as risk assets corrected in the first half of the month on concerns over European economic weakness, ISIS, and ebola, but largely recovered into month end as strong Q3 earnings and a drop in ebola and ISIS news headlines helped to assuage markets.  With regard to global central banks, the ECB disappointed investors to start the month, the Federal Reserve met expectations by ending QE3, and the BOJ surprised markets on Halloween by boosting its annual target for asset purchases.  The US monthly jobs report was stronger than expected, showing that employers added 248,000 jobs in September, with the unemployment rate falling to 5.9%.
Global M&A activity notably slowed in October from the robust levels seen earlier this year; one deterrent to deal activity has been the recent US government crackdown on tax inversions.  Notable deals or bids that were derailed in October included AbbVie’s $52 billion acquisition of Shire and Iliad’s bid for T-Mobile US.  Announced deals included Berkshire Hathaway’s purchase of Van Tuyl Group, Becton Dickinson’s $12 billion acquisition of CareFusion, Endo International’s $2.6 billion purchase of Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, Targa Resources Partners’ $7.7 billion acquisition of Atlas Pipeline Partners, GE’s $1.8 billion purchase of Milestone Aviation Group, Qualcomm’s $2.5 billion acquisition of CSR, Southwestern Energy’s $5.4 billion purchase of Chesapeake Energy’s Marcellus and Utica shale assets, and ONEOK’s $800 million acquisition of Chevron’s Permian Basin pipelines.
Developed market equity markets were mixed in October (see page 7).  Italy (-5.1%), France (-3.6%) and Spain (-3.1%) suffered the biggest losses; Hong Kong (+6.7%), Australia (+4.8%), and the S&P500 (+2.4%) saw gains.  US small caps outperformed, with the Russell 2000 up 6.6%, while the Russell 1000 was up 2.4% (see page 3).  Utilities (+8%), Health Care (+5.4%), and Industrials (+3.7%) were the best performing US sectors, while Energy (-2.9%), Materials (-2.5%) and Telecom (+0.9%) were the worst performing (see page 2).  Large cap growth (+2.6%) outperformed large cap value (+2.2%) in October (see page 3).  Emerging Market equities were mixed in October (see page 8), with the biggest gains in Russia (+4.6%), China (+4.2%), and India (+3.3%) and the biggest losses in Korea (-1.9%), the Philippines (-0.5%), and Indonesia (-0.5%).  
In currencies, the USD Index strengthened 1.1% in October (see page 9).  The weakest developed market currencies against the USD were the Norwegian Krone (-4.9%), the Swedish Krona (-2.4%) and the Japanese Yen (-2.4%).  The USD was mixed against emerging market currencies with the biggest gains against the Russian Ruble (-8%), Korean Won (-1.4%), and Brazilian Real (-1%).
US Treasury yields decreased across the curve in October (see page 11).  10 year rates closed the month at 2.34%, down from 2.49% at September month end.  Investment grade and high yield credit spreads recovered mid-month losses in October (see page 12); European sovereign spreads widened and 2 year US swap spreads tightened (see page 13).
In commodities, the GSCI index fell 6% in October (see page 10), with losses in Energy (-9.7%), Precious Metals (-3.6%), and Livestock (-1.2%); gains were seen in Agriculture (+8.8%) and Industrial Metals (+1.6%).  Within individual commodities, Cocoa led losses (-12.2%), followed by Crude Oil (-10.9%), Gasoline (-10.5%), and Brent Crude (-9.9%); Corn (+17.5%), Soybeans (+13.9%), Wheat (+11.5%), and Aluminum (+5.4%) gained; Gold fell 3.3%.
Contact CurAlea Associates for a Daily Market Review.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

September 2014 - Monthly Market Commentary


September was a difficult month for global risk assets as continued geopolitical tensions weighed on markets.  Global equity markets mostly fell with small caps leading the decline, developed and emerging market currencies declined against the US Dollar, commodities largely fell, and credit spreads widened.  The US monthly jobs report was weaker than expected, showing that employers added 142,000 jobs in August, with the unemployment rate ticking down slightly to 6.1%.  The September meeting of the Federal Reserve did not bring any meaningful surprises, as the central bank reduced its monthly asset purchases by an additional $10 billion and maintained its “considerable time” language regarding how long interest rates would remain near zero.
Global M&A activity remained robust in September.  Notable deals announced included Norwegian Cruise’s acquisition of Prestige Cruises for $3.0 billion, Compuware’s acquisition by Thoma Bravo for $2.5 billion, Electrolux’s $3.3 billion acquisition of GE Appliances, Eastman Chemical’s $1.8 billion acquisition of Taminco Corp, Cognizant’s $2.7 billion purchase of TriZetto, Danaher’s $2.2 billion purchase of Nobel Biocare, Microsoft’s $2.5 billion acquisition of Mojang, General Mills’ $820 million purchase of Annie’s, TRW’s $11.7 billion sale to ZF Friedrichshafen, Washington Prime’s $4.3 billion acquisition of Glimcher Realty, Mail.ru’s $1.5 billion acquisition of the remaining stake in Vkontakte, Vivendi’s sale of GVT to Telefonica for $9.3 billion, SAP’s $7.4 billion purchase of Concur Technologies, Siemens’ $7.6 billion acquisition of Dresser-Rand, Merck KGaA’s $17 billion purchase of Sigma-Aldrich, Encana’s $5.9 billion acquisition of Athlon Energy, Tibco Software’s $4.3 billion sale to Vista Equity, and J&J’s $1.75 billion acquisition of Alios BioPharma.
Developed market equity markets were generally weaker in September (see page 7).  Hong Kong (-7%), Australia (-5.3%) and Canada (-3.7%) suffered the biggest losses; Japan (+4.8%), Italy (+2.5%), and Spain (+1%) saw gains.  US small caps underperformed, with the Russell 2000 down 6%, while the Russell 1000 was down 1.8% (see page 3).  Consumer Staples (+0.6%), Health Care (+0.4%), and Telecom (+0.4%) were the best performing US sectors, while Energy (-7.6%), Consumer Discretionary (-2.8%) and Utilities (-1.9%) were the worst performing (see page 2).  Large cap growth (-1.5%) outperformed large cap value (-2.1%) in September (see page 3).  Emerging Market equities were mixed in September (see page 8), with the biggest gains in Argentina (+11.7%), the Philippines (+3.5%), and Thailand (+1.9%) and the biggest losses in Brazil (-11.6%), China (-6.2%), and Taiwan (-5.4%).  
In currencies, the USD Index strengthened 3.9% in September (see page 9).  The weakest developed market currencies against the USD were the New Zealand Dollar (-6.6%), the Australian Dollar (-6.3%) and the Japanese Yen (-5.1%).  The USD also strengthened against emerging market currencies with the biggest gains against the Brazilian Real (-8.4%), Russian Ruble (-6.4%), and the Turkish Lira (-5.1%).
US Treasury yields increased across the curve in September (see page 11).  10 year rates closed the month at 2.49%, up from 2.34% at August month end.  Investment grade and high yield credit spreads widened in September (see page 12); European sovereign spreads held steady and 2 year US swap spreads widened (see page 13).
In commodities, the GSCI index fell 6% in September (see page 10), with losses in Agriculture (-10.8%), Precious Metals (-6.7%), Energy (-6.3%), and Industrial Metals (-6.1%); gains were seen in Livestock (+6.2%).  Within individual commodities, Wheat led losses (-15.2%), followed by Palladium (-14.8%), Silver (-12.5%), and Corn (-12.1%); Feeder Cattle (+9.3%), Live Cattle (+6.3%), Lean Hogs (+4.6%), and Cocoa (+2.2%) gained; Gold fell 5.9%.
Contact CurAlea Associates for a Daily Market Review.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

August 2014 - Monthly Market Commentary

August saw renewed appetite for risk assets despite heightened geopolitical tension.  Global equity markets mostly rose with growth stocks and small caps outperforming, emerging market currencies moved largely higher, and credit spreads tightened.  The US monthly jobs report was decent, showing that employers added 209,000 jobs in July, with the unemployment rate ticking up slightly to 6.2%.  At the Kansas City Fed’s annual economic symposium in Jackson Hole, Fed Chair Yellen acknowledged that the job market has improved faster than expected, but continued to emphasize that the path of interest rates remains data dependent going forward; ECB President Draghi noted that inflation expectations in Europe had fallen, potentially laying the groundwork for a quantitative easing program, while BOJ Governor Kuroda gave a fairly upbeat assessment of Japan’s economy and indicated that the 2% inflation target could be hit during this fiscal year.
Global M&A activity continued apace in August.  Notable deals announced included Scientific Games’ acquisition of Bally Technologies for $3.3 billion, Evercore Partners’ $400 million purchase of ISI Group, Telefonica’s $10 billion acquisition of Vivendi’s Brazilian telecommunications business, Northstar Realty’s acquisition of Griffin-American for $4 billion, Walgreen’s $15.3 billion purchase of Alliance Boots, Kinder Morgan’s consolidation of its various listed affiliates in a $70 billion deal, Infineon’s $3 billion acquisition of International Rectifier, Dynegy’s $2.8 billion deal for Duke Energy’s retail business and 11 power plants and $3.5 billion deal for Energy Capital Partners’ EquiPower Resources and Brayton Point Holdings, Roche’s $8.3 billion acquisition of InterMune, Oak Hill Capital’s $1.4 billion purchase of Berlin Packaging, Amazon’s $970 million acquisition of Twitch, and Burger King’s $11.4 billion purchase of Tim Hortons.
Developed market equity markets mostly rose in August (see page 7), as the S&P500 (+3.9%), France (+2.7%), and the UK (+2%) led gains; Japan (-1.2%) and Hong Kong (-0.9%) ended the month lower.  US small caps outperformed, with the Russell 2000 up 5% (see page 4).  Utilities (+5%), Health Care (+4.9%), and Consumer Staples (+4.7%) were the best performing US sectors, while Telecom (-1%), Energy (+2.2%) and Materials (+3.8%) were the worst performing (see page 2).  Large cap growth (+4.6%) outperformed large cap value (+3.7%) in August (see page 3).  Emerging Market equities were mostly higher in August (see page 8), with the biggest gains in Brazil (+9.7%), Thailand (+4.9%), and Mexico (+3.8%). 
In currencies, the USD Index strengthened 1.6% in August (see page 9).  The weakest developed market currencies against the USD were the Euro (-1.9%), the British Pound (-1.7%) and the New Zealand Dollar (-1.6%).  The USD was mostly lower against emerging market currencies with the biggest gains in the Korean Won (+1.8%), Malaysian Ringgit (+1.5%), and the Brazilian Real (+1.1%); the Russian Ruble (-3.6%), Indonesian Rupiah (-1.1%) and Turkish Lira (-1%) weakened against the USD.
US Treasury yields fell across the curve in August (see page 11).  10 year rates closed the month at 2.34%, down from 2.56% at July month end.  Investment grade and high yield credit spreads tightened in August (see page 12); European sovereign spreads held steady and US swap spreads widened (see page 13).
In commodities, the GSCI index fell 1.6% in August (see page 10), with gains in Industrial Metals (+0.8%) and losses in Livestock (-3.8%), Energy (-1.9%), Agriculture (-0.7%), and Precious Metals (-0.3%).  Within individual commodities, Cotton led gains (+5.9%), followed by Natural Gas (+5.2%), Aluminum (+4.9%), and Palladium (+4%); Sugar (-5.9%), Soybeans (-5.3%), Lean Hogs (-4.9%), and Silver (-4.8%) weakened; Gold rose 0.4%.

Contact CurAlea Associates for a Daily Market Review.

Friday, August 1, 2014

July 2014 - Monthly Market Commentary



July brought disparate performance in global risk assets as developed market equities and commodities mostly retreated, the US dollar strengthened, and credit spreads widened, while emerging market equities rallied and US Treasury yields rose.  Second quarter US GDP rebounded strongly to a 4% annualized rate after shrinking 2.1% in the wintry first quarter.  The monthly jobs report was strong, showing that employers added 288,000 jobs in June, with a drop in the unemployment rate to 6.1%; the labor force participation rate held steady at 62.8%.  The Federal Reserve made a sixth consecutive $10 billion cut in its monthly asset purchases to a monthly rate of $25 billion, while acknowledging the recent rapid fall in unemployment and indicating that inflation has moved closer to their 2% annual target.
Global M&A activity continued to be robust in July.  Notable deals announced in July included ADM’s acquisition of WILD Flavors for $3 billion, Generali’s sale of its Swiss private bank BSI to BTG Pactual for $1.7 billion, Lindt’s purchase of Russell Stover Candies for an undisclosed price, Whiting Petroleum’s acquisition of Kodiak Oil & Gas for $6 billion, AECOM’s acquisition of URS for $4 billion, Albemarle’s purchase of Rockwood Holdings for $6.2 billion, Reynolds American’s acquisition of Lorillard for $27.4 billion, Gtech’s purchase of International Game Technology for $4.7 billion, Abbvie’s $54 billion purchase of Shire, the $2.3 billion sale by Severstal of its US steel assets to Steel Dynamics and AK Steel, CIT’s $3.4 billion purchase of OneWest Bank, BCE’s acquisition of the remaining shares of Bell Aliant for $3.7 billion, BSkyB’s acquisition of Sky Italia and a majority of Sky Deutschland for $9 billion, Shenyin & Wanguo Securities’ $6.4 billion acquisition of Hong Yuan Securities, Dollar Tree’s purchase of Family Dollar for $8.5 billion, Zillow’s $3.5 billion purchase of Trulia, Klepierre’s $9.7 billion acquisition for $9.7 billion, and Meda’s $3.1 billion acquisition of Rottapharm.
Developed market equity markets mostly fell in July (see page 7), as Germany (-4.3%), France (-3.8%), and the S&P500 (-1.4%) led losses.  US small caps underperformed sharply with the Russell 2000 down 6.1% (see page 4).  Telecom (+3.7%), Information Technology (+1.5%), and Health Care (+0.1%) were the best performing US sectors, while Utilities (-6.8%), Industrials (-4.1%) and Energy (-3.3%) were the worst performing (see page 2).  Large cap growth (-1.5%) slightly outperformed large cap value (-1.7%) in July (see page 3).  Emerging Market equities were mostly higher in July (see page 8), with the biggest gains in China (+8.1%), Argentina (+6.3%), and Indonesia (+5.6%). 
In currencies, the USD Index strengthened 2.1% in July (see page 9).  The weakest developed market currencies against the USD were the Swedish Krona (-3.1%), the New Zealand Dollar (-2.9%) and the Swiss Franc (-2.4%).  The USD was mixed against emerging market currencies with the biggest gains in the Indonesian Rupiah (+2.5%), Thai Baht (+0.8%), and the Chinese Yuan (+0.5%); the Russian Ruble (-4.9%), Brazilian Real (-2.2%) and Korean Won (-2%) weakened against the USD.
US Treasury yields rose in the belly of the curve in July (see page 11).  10 year rates closed the month at 2.56%, up from 2.53% at June month end.  Investment grade and high yield credit spreads widened in July (see page 12); European sovereign spreads held steady and US swap spreads widened (see page 13).
In commodities, the GSCI index fell 5.3% in July (see page 10), with gains in Industrial Metals (+2.7%) and losses in Agriculture (-8.7%), Energy (-5.8%), Precious Metals (-3.1%), and Livestock (-2.6%).  Within individual commodities, Coffee led gains (+11.4%), followed by Aluminum (+5.4%), Palladium (+3.6%), and Feeder Cattle (+3.4%); Corn (-14.7%), Cotton (-14.5%), Natural Gas (-13.7%), and Lean Hogs (-12.5%) weakened; Gold fell 3.1%.
Contact CurAlea Associates for a Daily Market Review.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

June 2014 - Monthly Market Commentary



June brought renewed strength in global risk assets and a continuation of low volatility across all major asset classes.  Global equity markets continued their relentless climb, with small caps once again reclaiming their leadership in the rally.  Another solid monthly jobs report, which showed that 217,000 jobs were added in May, heartened bulls as total payrolls finally surpassed pre-crisis highs.  The unemployment rate held steady at 6.3%, as did the workforce participation rate at 62.8%, a level last seen in the 1970s.  While the Federal Reserve cut its monthly asset purchases by another $10 billion to a monthly rate of $35 billion, Chair Yellen played down concerns about accelerating inflation and possible asset bubbles and indicated that interest rates are likely to stay low for a ‘considerable time’.
Global M&A activity continued at a brisk pace in June.  Notable deals announced in June included Ventas Inc’s agreement to purchase American Realty Capital Healthcare Trust for $2.6 billion, America Realty Capital Hospitality’s purchase of a group of hotels from funds managed by Goldman Sachs for $1.9 billion, Det Norske’s acquisition of Marathon Oil’s Norwegian assets for $2.7 billion, Dai-Ichi Life’s $5.7 billion purchase of Protective Life, Merck’s $3.9 billion purchase of Idenix, Tyson Foods’ $7.7 billion acquisition of Hillshire Brands, Analog Devices’ $2 billion purchase of Hittite Microwave, Google’s $500 million purchase of Skybox Imaging, Priceline’s $2.6 billion acquisition of OpenTable, Medronic’s $42.9 billion acquisition of Covidien, Williams’ $6 billion deal to acquire the remaining 50% of GP interests in Access Midstream Partners, Level 3’s $5.6 billion purchase of TW Telecom, GE’s sweetened $17 billion deal for Alstom’s power equipment unit (announced together with a series of JVs between the two companies), Oracle’s $5.3 billion purchase of Micros Systems, Wisconsin Energy’s $5.7 billion acquisition of Integrys Energy, William Lyon Homes’ $520 million purchase of a residential building business from Polygon Northwest, Etihad Airways’ purchase of a 49% stake in Alitalia for an undisclosed price, London Stock Exchange’s $2.7 billion acquisition of Frank Russell, Alcoa’s $2.9 billion purchase of Firth Rixson, Encana’s sale of its Bighorn assets in Alberta to Apollo Global for $1.8 billion, and TUI Travel’s $9.7 billion merger with its majority shareholder TUI AG.
Developed market equity markets mostly rose in June (see page 7), as Japan (+4.8%), Canada (+3.9%), and the S&P500 (+2%) led gains.  US small caps rose sharply with the Russell 2000 up 5.3% (see page 4).  Energy (+5.1%), Utilities (+4.5%), and Financials (+2.4%) were the best performing US sectors (see page 2), while Telecom (-1.1%), Consumer Staples (-0.2%) and Industrials (+0.3%) were the worst performing.  Large cap growth (+1.9%) underperformed large cap value (+2.6%) in June (see page 3).  Emerging Market equities were higher in June (see page 8), with the biggest gains in Argentina (+11.7%), India (+5.8%), and Thailand (+5.6%). 
In currencies, the USD Index weakened 0.7% in June (see page 9).  Gains against the USD were led by the New Zealand Dollar (+3%) and the British Pound (+2.1%), while the Norwegian Krone (-2.6%) weakened.  The USD was mixed against emerging market currencies with the biggest gains in the Russian Ruble (+2.7%), Brazilian Real (+1.3%), and the Thai Baht (+1.2%); the Indonesian Rupiah (-1.6%), Indian Rupee (-1.2%) and Turkish Lira (-1%) weakened against the USD.
The US Treasury yield curve flattened slightly in June (see page 11).  10 year rates closed the month at 2.53%, down from 2.48% at April month end.  Investment grade and high yield credit spreads tightened slightly in June (see page 12), while European sovereign spreads continued to grind lower (see page 13).
In commodities, the GSCI index rose (+2.1%) in June (see page 10), with gains in Livestock (+7.5%), Precious Metals (+6.9%), Energy (+3.2%), and Industrial Metals (+2.5%), and losses in Agriculture (-7.1%).  Within individual commodities, Silver led gains (+12.5%), followed by Live Cattle (+8.3%), Feeder Cattle (+8%), and Lean Hogs (+6.4%); Wheat (-9.7%), Corn (-9.4%), Soybeans (-8.2%), and Cotton (-6.1%) weakened; Gold rose 6.1%.
Contact CurAlea Associates for a Daily Market Review.