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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.

Sara Eisen

Sara Eisen joined CNBC in December 2013 as a correspondent, focusing on the global consumer. She is co-anchor of the 10AM ET hour of CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" (M-F, 9AM-11AM ET), broadcast from Post 9 at the New York Stock Exchange.

In March 2018, Eisen was named co-anchor of CNBC's "Power Lunch" (M-F, 1PM-3PM ET), which broadcasts from CNBC Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.

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