Stocks are down, but most stocks are up

The stock market may be down this year, but the average stock in the S&P 500 has actually risen.

After a 2015 in which the average stock underperformed the index, quite the opposite condition is transpiring this year. The S&P has slid nearly 3 percent, yet the average move for an S&P 500 stock Is a 0.1 percent drop. And 241 of the index's 504 issues are green for the year.

Some view this as a potential reason for optimism.

"One good thing I'm seeing out there is that the breadth is expanding," Eddy Elfenbein of the "Crossing Wall Street" blog said Tuesday on CNBC's "Power Lunch." "We're seeing a broader rally … that should bode well for the next several weeks."

The S&P 500 is a float-adjusted, capitalization-weighted index, meaning that the greater the value of the outstanding shares in a stock, the greater its weight in the index. This is why the average performance of the stock's contained therein and the index's performance are different.

The biggest drag on the S&P this year appears to be Amazon, followed by Bank of America (based on FactSet's reporting of the SPY point impacts). Meanwhile, on the upside, Verizon, AT&T and Exxon Mobil have been the biggest positive pullers on the index price.


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Trading Nation is a multimedia financial news program that shows investors and traders how to use the news of the day to their advantage. This is where experts from across the financial world – including macro strategists, technical analysts, stock-pickers, and traders who specialize in options, currencies, and fixed income – come together to find the best ways to capitalize on recent developments in the market. Trading Nation: Where headlines become opportunities.

Michael Santoli

Michael Santoli joined CNBC in October 2015 as a Senior Markets Commentator, based at the network's Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.  Santoli brings his extensive markets expertise to CNBC's Business Day programming, with a regular appearance on CNBC's “Closing Bell (M-F, 3PM-5PM ET).   In addition, he contributes to CNBCand CNBC PRO, writing regular articles and creating original digital videos.

Previously, Santoli was a Senior Columnist at Yahoo Finance, where he wrote analysis and commentary on the stock market, corporate news and the economy. He also appeared on Yahoo Finance video programs, where he offered insights on the most important business stories of the day, and was a regular contributor to CNBC and other networks.

Follow Michael Santoli on Twitter @michaelsantoli

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