Updated: Feb 24, 2020
By: The Quinnipiac University Economics Research Team, Jack French
During a very volatile week for global stock markets, the Central European indices reversed some of their recent trends while continuing others. The UK FTSE beat the US S&P 500’s weekly return which hasn’t occurred for several weeks. After a lengthy run of very weak performance, the Polish WIG 20 jumped about two percent with all their gains coming late in the week. The Romanian BET has been performing very consistently for several months but was down as much as a percent and a half before recovering somewhat on Friday.
Source: Own calculations based on data collected from each index.
The Hungarian BUX, up about two and a half percent, had the best week of all indices. The Czech PX and Slovakian SAX were relatively flat compared to the large movement in the other indices. The PX finished up about half a percent while the SAX finished exactly as it started the week.
Nearly all of the stock indices had strong mid- to late week performances after being pretty much flat or down early in the week. Between trade deal announcements in the US and UK election results, there were multiple events occurring late in the week with potential to shift global stock markets.
Source: Own calculations based on data collected from each index. The first graph shows the previous week’s performance. The remaining graphs show the three-month performance of each of the indices.
The US S&P closed at an all-time high on Friday. The UK FTSE saw a significant enough late week gain to erase some previous losses and bring its three month return to roughly even. Following an unusually volatile week the previous week, the SAX was completely flat and is about where it was three months ago. Poland’s WIG 20 is beginning to turn around after a month of big losses but is still down about four percent over the three month window. Despite the recent improvement, the WIG 20 closed only slightly above its early October low.
The Hungarian BUX is up about fourteen percent over the last three months for an annualized return of nearly 70% which would far surpass US or UK stock market returns. The S&P, Czech PX, and Romanian BET have more modest three month returns of between four and eight percent.
Whether the WIG 20’s recent upswing is signaling a longer trend or if it is following the UK index will be worth watching. Additionally, the US-China trade agreement reported on Friday may have far reaching effects or the continuing uncertainty regarding long term policy may keep markets on their current tracks.