Could this have been one of the sharpest but also one of the shortest bear markets on record?

As 2021 gets under way, very few people will look back with fondness at 2020, a year which saw the whole world focusing all of its time, energy and resources on fighting this virulent pandemic, with the global economy seemingly in freefall.

Here, Guy Foster, Head of Brewin Dolphin’s Research Team, reflects on a year characterised by unprecedented highs and lows. However, he also points out why for investors, things are certainly not all doom and gloom.

For example, whilst the FTSE100 fell by 14% over the year, America’s technology-heavy benchmark NASDAQ index rose a stunning 44%. Most other markets fell between these two extremes. Similarly, the fast and forceful policy responses to the pandemic mean that this could be turn out to be one of the shortest bear markets in history. Investors were further encouraged by the rapid progress made on producing approved vaccines. So much so that November turned out to be the strongest calendar month for either the FTSE All Share or the MSCI World in the current millennium.

So, whilst 2020 was one of the most challenging years the financial markets have endured in many years, the article suggests that we can look to the future with some positivity. Some near-term risks remain but investor sentiment has certainly become more optimistic following the vaccine announcements.

To read or download this thought-provoking article, simply click on the link below.

We will continue to keep you updated on market developments as the year unfolds. However, if you have any questions or need to discuss your financial affairs, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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