When the curtain closes on 2020, few investors will be sad to see it leave. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has led to the most volatile equities market in history. During the first quarter, the benchmark S&P 500 lost 34% of its value in less than five weeks. This has been followed by a ferocious rally off of the March 23 lows, as well as more than 30 new all-time highs from the technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite.
Interestingly, volatility can actually be a great thing for long-term investors, as it usually gives them an opportunity to buy into great businesses as a discount.