Goldman Sachs recently released its “S&P 500 Beige Book,” a quarterly survey of corporate conference calls which similarly collects “anecdotal evidence of fundamental and thematic trends” from which they highlight major themes.
As 2013 comes to a close, we took a look back at, and highlight below, some of the stories that captured the attention of investors and helped to set the trend for global equity markets over the past 12 months. With the notable exception of emerging markets, it was (as of this writing) a year of impressive gains for most major stock markets, particularly in light of what has been a persistently sluggish economic backdrop.
In the second quarter of 2013, institutional investors added to their equity holdings in the financial sector while reducing their exposure to energy stocks. Among the most widely held stocks, portfolio managers as a group added to positions in Microsoft, General Motors, Cisco, and Intel, and trimmed positions in Pfizer, Oracle, General Electric, and AT&T.
In the first quarter of 2013, institutional investors added to their equity holdings in the healthcare sector while reducing their exposure to the technology stocks. Among the most widely held stocks, portfolio managers as a group added to positions in Citigroup (C), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Microsoft (MSFT), and BlackRock (BLK), and trimmed positions in Apple (AAPL), Oracle (ORCL), Pfizer (PFE), and Coca-Cola (KO).
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