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Published October 20, 2021

The Stock Market Advance Stalls in Third Quarter

After a series of monthly gains fueled in part by the re-opening of the U.S. economy, the stock market rally stalled in the third quarter, with most of the major indices recording losses. The Dow Jones Industrial average declined 1.5%, the Standard and Poor’s MidCap 400 index fell 1.8% and small cap stocks, as measured by the Russell 2000, fell 4.4%. Unfortunately, bonds offered no refuge as interest rates rose and bond prices fell, resulting in a decline of 1.6% for the U.S. Aggregate Bond index. As the market rally stalled, many began to ask if this was the top for this bull market or just the pause that refreshes and leads to a continuation of the rally. Sadly, this is an unknowable question and only time will tell. But as the year draws to a close, we are paying attention to several developments that may matter to financial markets.

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