Small companies rule the second quarter

Friday marks the last full-trading day of the second quarter. Markets were influenced by geopolitics with trade and tariffs taking center stage while oil saw a big rally as the U.S. moved to increase sanctions on Iran while Venezuela’s production challenges continued.

As of Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was on track to close fractionally higher this quarter, and even though the gain will likely be less than a full percent, it will be the biggest gain for the Dow since the fourth quarter 0f 2017. For the month of June, the Dow is on track to finish at a loss.

The S&P 500 Index could close up 2.86% this quarter, and if so, it would be the largest one quarter point and percentage gain since the fourth quarter of 2017. The top performing sector of the S&P 500 shouls be energy – which was up by more than 10% on Friday. Consumer discretionary and info tech stocks were also big gainers. So far, financials and industrial were laggards.

The solid showing in the tech sector is apparent when looking at the Nasdaq Composite. It is on track to finish up over 6%, its largest one quarter point gain since the first quarter of 2017. The Nasdaq has posted gains for eight consecutive quarters.

The Russell 2000 Index, which is comprised of small cap companies could finish the quarter up over 7.5%, its largest one quarter percentage gain since the fourth quarter of 2016.