Big Week this Week...Hopefully We Will Get Some Clarity

Anxiety has heightened among investors and the wall of worry seems higher today than it was at the February market lows. Trade continues to be a prominent brick in the wall of worry and while it is a risk, it is manageable in our view. Even though it may seem like the US had a tough G7 meeting over the weekend. Data points (CEO Confidence, capex, unemployment, wage growth, PMIs, consumer confidence) still signal that there is time left in this business cycle and that the economy and markets can … View More

Monthly Market Commentary for May

May Market Update In our January 2018 commentary, we stated that, "the S&P 500 is well above its historical average, but high valuations do not mean bear markets."  We further stated, "while these (years when the market is above its historical average) were not the market's highest returning years, compared to the 10-year Treasury, currently at 2.48%, it still looks attractive."  Reviewing the year to date numbers, as of May 31, 2018 the S&P 500 was up 2.0% whereas the Barclay's Aggre… View More

Let’s keep the tariff war in perspective…Don’t believe everything you hear

We note that the big story clients are concerned about remains the US trade policy, but the rapid acceleration of economic growth and the declining poll numbers for Democrats suggest that economic fundamentals are outweighing trade policy, at least for the time being. Fiscal policy (Tax Cuts) of $800bn this year dwarfs trade policy and most of the trade retaliation tariffs (Currently estimated at $80bn) are rounding errors in a $20 trillion economy. NAFTA remains the real risk and investors are … View More

We Believe the Glass is Half Full

Despite the fact that the US cycle is long in terms of time (9 years), there still seems to be pent-up demand and momentum in the economy, and we're adding fiscal stimulus on top of that. Inflation will rise in this environment, but only slightly, and we think more investment is likely, which will boost output per hour and release some strain on the system.   The ability to fully deduct capital expenditures for the next 5 years and the shift to a territorial tax system that frees up trillions … View More

Energy Is On The Rise and Geopolitical Tensions Remain High

Markets were mixed this week as small cap stocks rose while large cap stocks declined.  Oil prices continued to rise on the prospect of sanctions against Iran and reduced output from OPEC; Venezuela’s crude oil production, 800,000 barrels per day, is 65% below January 2016 levels.  Brent crude, the international benchmark, briefly surpassed $80 per barrel for the first time since 2014.  And, the PHLX Oil Service Sector Index rose 4.5% for the week to post a 24.5% gain since the end of March… View More

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