Despite the surging stock market from the March lows, trillions in liquidity support from the Fed, retirement confidence declined.
There has been a growing concern over Technology stocks as investors “Party Like It’s 1999.” While no two periods are the same, the outcomes often are. For longer-term investors, if we are amid another “Tech Bubble,” the biggest challenge is navigating it and “living to tell about it.”
Value (investing) is dead. Long live value investing. Such certainly seems to be the mantra as investors continue to pile into growth stocks while rationalizing valuations using methodologies which historically have not worked well.
In this week’s “Technically Speaking,” the “Golden Cross” arrives, but are the bulls safe? As noted two weeks ago, is the 50/200 dma crossover is historically bullish for equities. However, with markets facing one of the worst earnings declines on record, could overly exuberant investors be walking into a trap?
When looking at the acceleration in the price of the Nasdaq, and particularly within the small group of stocks driving that advance, you can begin to fathom our concerns. Furthermore, the divergence between the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 index is emulating the late 90’s.
Over the last quarter, the “Death of Fundamentals” has become apparent as investors ignore earnings to chase market momentum. However, throughout history, such large divergences between fundamentals and price have resulted in low future returns. This time is unlikely to be different.
If you missed Part-1 of our series on the “Theory Of MMT Falls Flat When Faced With Reality,” start there. In Part-2, we complete our analysis of the theory and the potential ramifications. The premise of our discussion was this recent explanation of “Modern Monetary Theory” by Stephanie Kelton. As discussed previously, economic theory always sounds much better than how it works out in reality.
If you haven’t heard of Modern Monetary Theory, or “MMT,” you will soon. If you recently lost your job due to the economic shut down, and received a stimulus check, you are already a beneficiary. As we will discuss in Part-1 of this two-part series, MMT’s theory falls flat when faced with reality.
With sentiment currently at very high levels, combined with low volatility, and a high degree of investor complacency, all the ingredients necessary for a market reversal are currently present. Am I sounding an “alarm bell” and calling for a massive correction? No.
Is it 1999 or 2007? Retail investors flood the market as speculation grows rampant with a palpable exuberance and belief of no downside risk. What could go wrong?
There are a tremendous number of things that can go wrong in the months ahead. Such is particularly the case of surging stocks against a depressionary economy.
Rationalizing high valuations won’t improve future return outcomes.
On Friday, the Bureau Of Labor Statistics released the widely expected employment report for May. Despite continued weekly jobless claims over the last month exceeding more than 8-million, the BLS reported an increase of more than 2.5 million jobs in May.
In 2013, I wrote an article discussing comments made by Russ Koesterich, CFA, regarding the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI). Given this economic indicator just crashed by the most on record, it is worth reviewing his comments.
Currently, the Fed is injecting liquidity into the markets and economy at a record pace. While liquidity does have positive short-term benefits, is the Fed walking into a trap?
Is it possible the Fed over-reacted to a natural disaster? There are two different types of “recessionary” events that occur throughout history. The first is a “business cycle” recession, which happens with some regularity as excesses build up in the economy. These cycles generally take 12-18 months to complete as those excesses are reversed.
Jeremy Siegel, in time, will likely be proved wrong about the end of the “40-year bond bull” market. History suggests that not only is the “bond bull” alive and well, it likely has quite a long way as the U.S. will become more like Japan over time.
The Federal Reserve seemingly is an ongoing mission to destroy the bottom 90%.
The fiscal and monetary responses to the “coronavirus” created a surge in savings. While many hope those savings will go back to work, the “savings mirage” won’t save the economy.
Whether its corporate profits, earnings, or GDP, no matter how you analyze the data, it suggests the outlook for stocks going into the summer is not favorable.
This week’s newsletter will be somewhat condensed as the bulk of our current positioning is based upon the information contained in the two reports referenced herein. The goal of this week’s letter is simply to outline the market ranges which fall within the context of our current Macroview.
If you are hoping the “bear market” is over, and have jumped “back in” with all your capital, you are in “good company,” as many others, judging by my twitter feed, have done the same. Just be prepared to be disappointed in the months ahead.
In the end, it does not matter IF you are “bullish” or “bearish.” What matters, in terms of achieving long-term investment success, is not necessarily being “right” during the first half of the cycle, but by not being “wrong” during the second half.
With the economy shut down, layoffs in the millions, and no clear visibility about the economic recovery post-pandemic, companies are going to become vastly more conservative on the use of their cash. Given that source of market liquidity is now gone, the market will have a much tougher time maintaining current levels, much less going higher.
The majority of the time, when you hear someone say “I bought it for the dividend,” they are trying to rationalize an investment mistake. However, it is in the rationalization that the “mistake” is compounded over time. One of the most important rules of successful investors is to “cut losers short and let winners run.”
The “ONE Thing” you need to do TODAY, right now, is “accept” where you are. What you had, what was lost, and the mistakes you made, CAN NOT be corrected. They are in the past. However, by hanging on to those “emotions,” we lock ourselves out of the ability to take actions that will begin the corrective process.
Given the magnitude, and multiple confirmations, of these signals, it is far too soon to assume the “bear market” is over. This is particularly the case, given the selloff is less than one-month old.
While it is certainly hoped by many that we are closer to the end of the liquidation cycle, than the beginning, the dollar funding crisis, a blowout in debt yields, and forced selling of assets, suggests there is likely more pain to come before we are done.
We highly suspect that we have seen the highs for the year. Most likely, we are moving into an environment where portfolio management will be more tactical in nature, versus buying and holding. In other words, it is quite probable that “passive investing” will give way to “active management.”
We are likely experiencing more than just a “soft patch” currently despite the mainstream analysts’ rhetoric to the contrary. There is clearly something amiss within the economic landscape, even before the impact of COVID-19, and the ongoing decline of inflationary pressures longer term was already telling us just that.
While we remain optimistic about the markets currently, we are also taking precautionary steps of tightening up stops, adding non-correlated assets, raising some cash, and looking to hedge risk opportunistically on any rally.
In September 2017, when the Trump Administration began promoting the idea of tax cut legislation, I wrote a series of articles discussing the fallacy that tax cuts would lead to higher tax collections, and a reduction in the deficit...
In 2007, I was at a conference where Paul McCulley, who was with PIMCO at the time, was discussing the idea of a “Minsky Moment.” At that time, this idea fell on “deaf ears” as the markets, and economy, were in full swing. However, it wasn’t too long before the 2008 “Financial Crisis” brought the “Minsky Moment” thesis to the forefront.
In the President’s “State of the Union Address” on Tuesday, he used the podium to talk up the achievements in the economy and the markets. While it certainly is a laundry list of items he can claim credit for, it is the claim of record-high stock prices that undermines the rest of the story. Let me explain.
On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve concluded their January “FOMC” meeting and released their statement. Overall, there was not much to get excited about, as it was virtually the same statement they released at the last meeting. However, Jerome Powell made a comment which caught our attention...
The trouble currently is that global short-term interest rates are still close to, or below zero, and cannot be cut much more, which has deprived central banks of their main lever if a recession strikes.
The problem with low interest rates for so long is they have encouraged the misallocation of capital. We see it everywhere throughout the entirety of the financial system from consumer debt, to subprime auto-loans, to corporate leverage, and speculative greed.
Comparison-created unhappiness and insecurity is pervasive, judging from the amount of spam touting everything from weight-loss to plastic surgery. The basic principle seems to be that whatever we have is enough, until we see someone else who has more. Whatever the reason, comparison in financial markets can lead to remarkably bad decisions.
The 2020 Decade: Valuations & The Destiny Of Low Returns. As we enter into a new decade, investors have become complacency with high rates of return on stocks. However, what is the likelihood the next decade will deliver the same.
As we wrap up the decade. it is a good time to review the 7-impossible trading rules to follow in a bull market. These rules are not new, or unique, but they are the foundation of long-term investing success.
As we wave goodbye to the bull market of the 2010s, here are the rules for investing in whatever comes in the next decade.
Despite Central Bank’s best efforts globally to stoke economic growth by pushing asset prices higher, the effect has been entirely consumed by those with actual savings, and discretionary income, available to invest.
Not only did the tariffs get delayed, but on Friday, it was reported that China and the U.S. reached “Phase One” of the trade deal, which included “some” tariff relief and agricultural purchases.
The current path we are on is unsustainable. The remedies being applied today is akin to using aspirin to treat cancer. Sure, it may make you feel better for the moment, but it isn’t curing the problem.
While the bulls are certainly hoping the “cash hoard” will flow into U.S. equities, the reality may be quite different.
With the third quarter of 2019 reporting season mostly behind us, we can take a look at what happened with earnings to see what’s real, what’s not, and what it will mean for the markets going forward.
What's the most important economic number? GDP, Employment, claims....nope....those are all lagging indicators. If you want to know where you are headed look at the 85-component CFNAI. Here's why.
In today’s market the majority of investors are simply chasing performance. However, why would you NOT expect this to be the case when financial advisers, the mainstream media, and WallStreet continually press the idea that investors “must beat” some random benchmark index from one year to the next.
In a “secular bull’ market, the prevailing trend is “bullish” or upward-moving. In a “secular bear” the market tends to trend sideways with severe drawdowns and sharp rallies. However, what truly defines long-term secular markets are valuations, and whether those valuations are contracting or expanding.
A correction is coming, just don't tell the bulls just yet. A technical look at the rapid reversion of sentiment from bearish back to bullish. With more extreme extensions of technical indicators, it suggests a correction is likely over the next few weeks in the stockmarket.