When the Fed surreptitiously began to tighten as we believe (via tapering), in January 2014, history suggested that Consumer Discretionary and Small Caps would be the most likely initial market victims (at least from a relative perspective).
The Russell 2000 is about five points ahead of Large Caps YTD, and is approaching its April 2011 long-term relative peak. We view this outperformance as their leadership’s last gasp and not a new cycle.
New bull markets are front end loaded, with the strongest performance usually coming within the first few months. Study also shows that Small Cap Growth stocks tend to outperform their Large Cap and Value counterparts.