Stock and bond volatility, which many had dismissed as an artifact of time, has reemerged. US stocks, which finished the quarter slightly down, have already seen double digit-moves in both directions, and the experience for overseas stocks has been roughly equivalent. Trying to pinpoint the exact rationale for day-to-day and week-to-week market movements is a nebulous task. During the quarter, we have seen a litany of events unfold, both big and small. Interest rates have surged higher as the Federal Reserve continues on its path of monetary tightening. Facebook, the 6th largest S&P constituent, became embroiled in a scandal over user data. Amazon, the 4th largest S&P constituent, has faced an onslaught of attacks from our President. And, most notably, fears have been stoked that we are about to embark upon a trade war with China. Pick your poison, as each of the aforementioned events has had varying degrees of impact on financial markets, in addition to an infinite number of other variables that could be causing increased volatility. Download Q1 2018 commentary.