Here Are The Best And Worst Performing Assets In May And 2020

After a catastrophic March and a euphoric April, in May risk assets posted another strong performance, as the global growth rate of Covid-19 cases continued to slow, offering hope that the worst of the pandemic may have passed according to the monthly DB review of the best and worst-performing assets of the prior month. Furthermore, as countries throughout the developed world moved to ease their lockdown restrictions, data showed that economic activity might be starting to gradually pick up again, which further helped to boost investor sentiment.

Looking at the overall sample of assets tracked by the German bank, a total of 33/38 of the noncurrency assets had a positive return over the month, meaning that 12/38 are now positive on a YTD basis too.

Oil was the big story once again in May, though it marked a reversal of fortunes for WTI as it gained +88.4% over the month, bringing an end to a run of 4 successive monthly declines. The moves came as global oil demand started to pick up again, thus moving WTI from the worst performer in the April sample to the best in May, even if this still leaves it down -41.9% on a YTD basis. Brent crude saw a similar move higher, though not as extreme, climbing +39.8% in May to leave it “only” -46.5% lower on a YTD basis.

Commodities more broadly had a good month as well: silver was one of the best performers in May, up +19.3% in its biggest move higher since April 2011. Meanwhile gold cemented its existing lead as the top YTD performer in our sample with a further +2.6% rise in May, which means it’s now up +14.0% on a YTD basis.

Equities for the most part had a strong performance, with the majority of indexes seeing solid increases in May. Brazil’s Bovespa led the way with a +8.6% increase, while the Nasdaq’s +6.9% move higher means the index is now solidly positive on a YTD basis. The worst performance overall was the Hang Seng, however, which fell -6.3% in May amidst further political unrest in Hong Kong.

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