2013 was a rewarding year for many equity investors as the three major U.S. market indices showed significant improvements over 2012.
The recovery in the markets spilled into Q3 as several indicators suggested improvements.
The U.S. economy continued to generate slow but steady gains in Q2, with GDP increasing 1.7 percent.
Real GDP increased at an annualized rate of 0.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012.
GDP growth slipped into negative territory during the fourth quarter, though analysts note much of the decline does not necessarily reflect a significant shift in the economy.
The U.S. unemployment rate unexpectedly fell by 0.3 percent to 7.8 percent in September, marking the lowest level of unemployment since January 2009.
The economy continued sputtering in the second quarter, with modest 1.5 percent GDP growth and unemployment remaining stubbornly above 8.0 percent.
Despite domestic headlines throughout the year featuring continued high unemployment, a fierce debt ceiling debate and a U.S. credit rating downgrade as well as headlines abroad focused on the sovereign debt crisis, 2011 came to a close with many focused on the year’s positive news