The Best And Worst Performing Sectors Of 2020

The Best and Worst Performing Sectors of 2020

The Best and Worst Performing Sectors of 2020

To say that 2020 was an unusual year in markets would be a vast understatement.

In 2020, we saw the quickest and deepest bear market decline in history, trillions of dollars of global stimulus, the highest volatility (VIX) on record, negative oil prices, and the fastest recovery from a bear market ever—just to name a few of the abnormalities.

And while the broader economy is still in a state of repair, investors finished the year in the black. The S&P 500, for example, ended with 16.3% gains, which was an above-average outing for the benchmark index.

Winners and Losing Sectors of 2020

Today’s visualization uses an augmented screenshot of the FinViz treemap, showing the final numbers posted for major U.S.-listed companies, sorted by sector and industry.

As you can see, the best and worst-performing sectors generally fall into two categories: those that benefitted from COVID-19, and those that didn’t.

This massive divergence is evident in the numbers. Companies in winning sectors are often up double or triple digits—while their losing counterparts were often down double digits, sometimes even halving in value from how they started the year.

The Winners

1. Software Applications
It was another banner year for Big Tech, but some of the top-performing companies were those that acted as enablers to remote working and e-commerce. Perhaps the most notable entry here is Shopify, which rose 178% on the year and is nearly a $150 billion company today.

2. Internet Retail
While Amazon is the undisputed 800-pound gorilla in e-commerce, companies like Etsy and Wayfair also had incredible years—as did many internet retail plays on the opposite side of the Pacific. Chinese company Pinduoduo, described as the fastest-growing tech company in the world, gained 331% on the year as it capitalized on emerging trends such as social e-commerce, team purchasing, and consumer-to-manufacturing (C2M) sales.

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Disclosure: This material has been distributed for informational purposes only. It is the opinion of the author and should not be considered as investment advice or a recommendation of any ...

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