Innovest's February 2010 Market Commentary

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The Markets

After January’s modest correction in stock prices, the U.S. equity markets rebounded in February and posted modest gains for the month.  Large-cap stocks, as measured by the S&P 500, finished February up 3.10%.  After disappointing returns in January, February’s performance brought the year-to-date performance for the S&P 500 back in to positive territory, up 1.31%.  Of the 134 subsectors that comprise the S&P 500, 75% posted a gain in February, up from 22% in January.  

Mid-cap stocks were the best performing U.S. equity category in February, outperforming large- and small-cap stocks.  The S&P 400 finished the month up 5.21%.  Small-cap stocks outperformed large-cap stocks and slightly underperformed mid-cap stocks, with the S&P 600 up 4.30% for the month.  International equities provided mixed returns with the MSCI EAFE Index down 0.69% and the MSCI Emerging Markets index up 0.35%.  Year-to-date performance for international equities remained depressed, as the MSCI EAFE Index is down 3.69% and the MSCI Emerging Markets index fell 1.50%.

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