After a sluggish performance last year, investors had hoped that the stock market would get off to a better start this year. But the U.S. equity indexes are indeed off to a poor start to 2016. Equities continue to be weighed down by fears of slowing global economic growth. Some analysts are even calling for a global recession. Because of this widespread pessimism, the S&P 500 Index has lost 4% year-to-date.