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Market Commentary - Page 8

Fear seems to be dominating the market, and it can be attributed to a collection of key uncertainties that are largely interrelated and global in scope.

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U.S. equities are having trouble holding a lead lately. The prevailing pattern has been a hopeful jump at the start of trading that quickly reverses course as nervous investors sell into the brief display of strength. Through Tuesday, the Standard & Poor’s 500 was down about 8% for 2016, making it the worst start to a year ever, and on Wednesday markets opened in the red.

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The extreme pessimism in global equity markets so far in 2016 has caught many investors by surprise, and that has contributed to the day-to-day volatility that we’re seeing. We at USAA understand that the market’s erratic behavior may have members worried about the impact on their family’s finances. We can assure members that we take your concerns seriously and that we are here to help you get through this rough patch.

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Good luck trying to find a logical pattern in global equity market behavior so far in 2016. On the first trading day of the year, China was down, and that was blamed for European and U.S. stocks being down. Since then, we’ve also seen China up and both Europe and the Standard & Poor’s 500 down, and China and Europe down and the S&P up. And even when the S&P is up, it tends to lack conviction.

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Events both at home and abroad made 2015 a turbulent year for investors, and we expect more of the same in 2016.

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