Time for a spring clean, the first quarter of 2024 is done and dusted.

1st April 2024

That’s it then, in a blink of an eye the first quarter is done and dusted!

It has been a fairly eventful first quarter of 2024, with US bond yields rising after the first much anticipated interest rate cut not coming and based upon other data, those hopeful it will arise sooner rather than later, might be left disappointed.

Most other bond yields, like those in the UK and Europe, also followed suit as central bankers sat on their hands and refused to cut interest rates.

It could be that June will be the earliest that rates are cut, but if the data continues to surprise on the upside, this could be pushed out a little longer still. Watch this space!

On to inflation: again back in the US, it came in a little hotter than expected. This was largely due to transportation, where airfares and used car prices rose, although markets seemed to take this in their stride – something that would not have happened 12 months ago!

Equity markets have powered on overall so far this year, with the US and Europe leading the charge. The UK, unfortunately, continues to struggle and is flat year to date.

Coming into this year you could be forgiven for thinking that earnings expectations were a bit high, but overall company earnings have been pretty solid in 2024.

Tech and the more growth orientated part of the market continues to dominate and make headlines, but there are some signs that the much wanted breadth of the market is starting to tentatively appear, although there is still a long way to go.

Time to finish the leftover Easter eggs…

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