Broad-Based Rally Lifted Most Markets Last Week

Markets roared back to life last week, rebounding after widespread losses in the previous week. The big winner for the five trading days through Oct. 21: emerging market stocks, which led the rally among a set of proxy ETFs representing the major asset classes. Meanwhile, last week’s losers were limited to fractional losses in foreign corporate bonds and commodities.

Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets (VWO) posted a strong 2.0% total return for the five trading days through Friday, eclipsing the rest of the field by a solid margin. The advance was comfortably above the 1.5% gain for the number-two gainer last week, Vanguard Global ex-US Real Estate (VNQI).

Broadly defined commodities fell the most last week. The iPath Bloomberg Commodity ETN (DJP) dipped slightly, shedding 0.25%–the first weekly setback in five weeks.

Last week’s upside bias lifted an ETF-based version of the Global Markets Index (GMI.F), an investable, unmanaged benchmark that holds all the major asset classes in market-value weights. GMI.F climbed 0.5% for the five trading days through Friday.


In the one-year column, a change of leadership is conspicuous as emerging market bonds and stocks post the strongest returns through Oct. 21. VanEck Vectors JP Morgan Emerging Market Local Currency Bond (EMLC) currently holds the top spot for trailing one-year results: the ETF is ahead by 10.5% on a total return basis. In close pursuit is Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets (VWO), which is ahead by 10.3% over the past 12 months.

Meantime, commodities remain in last place for the trailing one-year period. DJP is off by a bit more than 3% for the 12 months through Friday.

GMI.F’s one-year performance perked up a bit last week. The benchmark is ahead by 4.2% for the year through Oct. 21.