Hamlin equity accounts increased 12.48% during the first quarter. The S&P 500 Index advanced 6.17% for the quarter as investors anticipated strong earnings growth driven by flush consumers spending stimulus checks in a re-opening economy. Hamlin bond accounts increased modestly in value despite an 80-basis point back-up in the 10-year Treasury yield to 1.73% over the first three months of 2021.
Hamlin equity accounts increased 15.00% during the fourth quarter. The S&P 500 advanced 12.15% for the quarter, celebrating better than expected COVID vaccine efficacy rates and the resolution of a contentious presidential election. Hamlin bond accounts increased in value despite a 24-basis point back-up in the 10-year Treasury yield to 0.93% over the last three months of 2020. In an effort to shorten this quarterly letter, we are publishing our 2021 Stock Market Outlook independently.
Hamlin’s equity accounts increased approximately 4.80% over the last three months as the stock market climbed steadily through mid-September to an all-time high. Investors anticipated a post-COVID re-opening boost to earnings and record- setting global monetary stimulus pushed PE multiples to levels not seen since 2000. Hamlin’s high-yield tax exempt bond account values advanced in line with the broader high yield municipal bond market as 10-year U.S. Treasury bond yields dropped approximately 5 basis points.
Hamlin equity accounts increased significantly over the last three months as the S&P 500 had its strongest quarter since 1998, gaining 20.54%. Monetary and fiscal stimulus calmed credit and labor markets, and the global spread of coronavirus showed signs of containment. Our municipal bond portfolios increased in value, benefiting from lower rates and Fed-induced spread compression.
We are returning to a “question and answer” format for the summer-time newsletter. We have tried to answer the questions posed most frequently by our clients and business partners over the last few months.