Stocks wrap up best January in 30 years


The last time stocks did this well in January, Tom Brady was a tween and Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay was a toddler.

The S&P 500 and the Dow are each up more than 7% this month. Those mark the biggest gains since January 1987 and January 1989, respectively.

The S&P 500 had its best monthly overall gain since October 2015, according to Jodie Gunzberg, head of US Equities at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

It’s an amazing turnaround for the market considering that December was the worst month for stocks in nearly 90 years.

Investors were afraid that the Fed was hellbent on raising interest rates several times in 2019 even though there was little evidence of inflation becoming a problem anytime soon.

Stocks have surged in recent weeks because of relatively strong corporate earnings, continued optimism about the US economy and a big shift in the Federal Reserve’s interest rate plans for the rest of this year.

The Dow has been led by nearly 20% pops in blue chips Boeing (BA), IBM (IBM) and Goldman Sachs (GS). Each reported good fourth-quarter results and healthy outlooks.

Tech stocks have surged as well, largely because of solid earnings. The Nasdaq has gained 10% since the start of the year. FAANG stocks Facebook (FB) and Netflix (NFLX) each spiked nearly 30% this month on the back of robust earnings and outlooks.

Amazon (AMZN), which reported results after the closing bell Thursday that topped forecasts, has shot up more than 15%. Google owner Alphabet (GOOGL), which reports February 4, is up 8%.

Even Apple (AAPL), which started the year with a shocking sales warning that sent its stock plunging, is now up nearly 6% this month after its latest results weren’t as bad as investors feared.

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