4 of S&P’s largest daily moves came in last 14 days
Record-setting volatility? Our chart plots the S&P 500’s top 20 daily gains and losses and reviews recent swings in investor sentiment.
March 27, 2020 | 1 minute read
The realization that the COVID-19 outbreak would wreak havoc on the U.S. and global economies has come at an alarmingly quick pace. With it, markets around the world have fallen precipitously. The S&P 500 plummeted nearly 34% from its all-time high (reached as recently as February 19), marking the fastest-ever decline into a bear market, and has since recouped more than 15%.
During the sell-off, markets have faced massive volatility, both to the upside and the downside, as investor sentiment swung swiftly in reaction to the stream of health, economic and fiscal updates.
Indeed, the level of volatility markets have seen has been historic. By one tracker, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), which measures investor expectations of near-term volatility, reached an all-time high on March 16 before moving lower the following several days.1
Viewed another way, the S&P 500 has seen historically large daily moves in the past several weeks. In fact, 20%, or four, of the S&P 500 Index’s 20 largest daily (percentage) moves have taken place since March 12.2
Investors would be wise to prepare for additional bouts of volatility throughout the remainder of 2020, as the longer-term economic impact of COVID-19 becomes clearer.