I’ve just updated my Keeping Score page for S&P 500 performance for the month of March, as well as the year to date. Only three of the eleven S&P sectors outperformed during the quarter. They were, in order, IT, Communication services and Consumer discretionary–all sectors that tend to do best during economic expansions. The most highly cyclical, commodity-like sectors underperformed, though, while defensives brought up the rear.
All this the opposite of what the Wall Street strategist consensus had predicted. My sense is that this consensus is now saying that it still believes the near-term direction of the stock market is down–it just got the timing wrong.