Kai W. Hong, CFA
Managing Director & Chief Investment Strategist
Following the dramatic run-up in most equity markets in 2013, the directionless nature of trading early on was to be expected. Macro weakness in China and some earnings disappointments triggered a sharp sell-off in the markets at the end of January, but expectations for better economic growth and a “clean” suspension of the US debt limit for a year gave further impetus to buying for most of February. Political turmoil in Italy, Turkey, and (more bloodily) Ukraine only served to dampen enthusiasm slightly. In early March, sentiment turned sharply on the Health Care (Biotech) and Technology names that had been leading, volatility increased, and returns were choppy.