However, some stocks were harder at work than others, with many staging rallies of more than 20 percent.
Among the S&P 500 stocks that notched the strongest performances were names like Petsmart, which gained 29 percent during the summer season. Shares were helped along by a regulatory disclosure that activist hedge fund Jana Partners became the pet supply retailer's largest shareholder, with a near 10 percent stake. Jana Partners wants to explore ways to extract more value from the company.
Another star performer continues to be semiconductor giant Intel. Shares rallied more than 30 percent during summer vacation. A good chunk of those gains came on the heels of a bullish second-quarter earnings report that sent shares soaring by 9 percent on July 15. The company also increased its stock buyback authorization by $20 billion.
As for the single best-performing S&P 500 stock during the summer season, that distinction goes to a company that's gained 41 percent during that time frame. More recently the company has been making waves in its attempts to sign NBA all-star Kevin Durant to a mega endorsement deal, but ultimately losing out to larger rival Nike.
Under Armour stock has been a summer sizzler, but not just because of the share price appreciation. The company also signed super model Giselle Bundchen to an endorsement deal to help it sell products catered to women.
The top 10 best-performing S&P 500 stocks between Memorial Day and Labor Day this year are listed below.
On the downside, a number of companies on the index posted stock declines of 10 percent or more during that same time period.
The single worst-performing stock in the index during the summer was Genworth Financial. The insurance company fell sharply after reporting earnings in July, amid investor concerns over whether the company had adequately planned for the costs associated with long-term care policies that help cover things like nursing homes and elderly care. Shares of Genworth dropped by 18 percent between Memorial Day and Labor Day this year.
The worst-performing stocks in the S&P 500 during this past summer are listed below.
As investors return from their vacations, and get back to work for the final four months of the year, the above stocks will garner added attention as investors try to ascertain whether that positive or negative momentum will continue. Others may look at some of the laggards for signs that turnarounds could be in the making.
This article originally appeared in CNBC.
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