Stock Market Summer Sell-off Scenario

One of the most salient features of the market environment of recent months is the evolution of investor psychology. From March through May, stocks experienced a classic internal correction in which the most overbought and overvalued stocks declined while fairly valued large caps remained buoyant.

The rationale behind this strategy was the determination of money managers not to give back the big gains from the 2013 rally. Instead of selling everything they simply moved money out of last year’s top-performing (but overvalued) small caps and moved money into stocks sporting lower P/E ratios and higher dividend yields. Consequently, the benchmark S&P 500 large cap index held up well throughout the March-May correction, as did the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

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