The stock market had its worst first half since 1970
Congratulations, you just lived through the stock market's worst first half since the Nixon administration.
Driving the news: The S&P 500 dropped 20.6% in the first half of 2022, as the Fed launched a tough rate-hiking campaign to counter inflation.
- That's the ugliest first half for stocks since 1970, as a recession was getting underway. (The recession would last until November of that year.)
- This year, of the 11 industrial "sectors" that comprise the S&P 500, just one posted a gain so far. Energy stocks rose 29.2%, on soaring crude oil and gasoline prices.
Yes, but: The carnage in the S&P wasn't as bad as in the tech-heavy Nasdaq, which has fallen 29.5% so far in 2022.
What to watch: Inflation — and whether the Fed ramps up its rate-hiking plans in response to it — will be a major driver of the market's direction for the next few months.