Tag Archives: strategy

Opportunities are Present Even During Recessions

Of the last five GDP estimates* released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, four of them have produced an annualized growth rate below 2.0%**; 0.4%, 1.3%, 1.8%, 3.0%, and 1.9% respectively.  Additionally, the Federal Reserve revised down their own ranged-estimate … Continue reading

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Gold: The Best Long Term Investment – Gallup Survey

I don’t blame you.  Interest rates are next to nothing.  Stocks are experiencing frequent bouts of high volatility.  Pop went the real estate bubble.  Gold has increased in value on a yearly basis for the last 10 years.  I’m all … Continue reading

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After Apple, SPX Futures Higher; Key Levels

Yesterday started out as planned, or at least according to yesterday’s quantitative levels of 1366 / 1377. After opening up flat, the SPX took to higher levels immediately following the 10 AM economic releases–specifically the revision to last month’s New … Continue reading

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Mixed Data, Mixed Reaction, Awaiting AAPL

The first tick on the SPX today was slightly negative–the low of the day. From there, the SPX made its way to 1375, pausing only briefly in advance of the 10 AM economic releases. Although several indicators came out this … Continue reading

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Euro Fears Rise, Equities Fall

European drama is certainly back in the minds of market participants. Futures took a sharp dive lower at 4 AM ET this morning after economic data pointed to a weakening Euro-Zone. Specifically, Germany Manufacturing PMI slumped to its lowest level … Continue reading

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Wait For The Opportunity

The S&P 500 closed out the session on Friday right in the middle of the range I’ve indicated on the chart below (quantitative, not technical); giving up the most of it’s gains.  With about an 11 handle range from 1372 … Continue reading

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The Year of Reconciliation, Part I

Last year was a very difficult year in terms of investment management; very rarely will I speak in extremes, but 2011 could have been the most challenging year ever. There was, and still is, a confluence of factors too divergent to properly quantify. This created an environment of high volatility; so high that tactical strategies had trouble achieving, and subsequently maintaining, investment gains. “Buy and Hold” has its own issues involving behavioral risk.

This industry is marred with contradictions. Our timeframes are too long and, simultaneously, too short. Investors seek to maximize growth and moderate risk. Our focus is divided between the macroeconomic situation and microeconomic considerations, both of which drive portfolio decisions. Returns are benchmarked variably; on an absolute basis or relative basis depending on the particular day and/or perspective. Continue reading

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The Economic Bifurcation May Be Converging

The high for the S&P in the first half of 2010 was about 1220 toward the end of April. Comparatively, in the first hallf of this year, the S&P hasn’t printed below 1249, yet Gallup’s Economic Confidence index is near its low for the year—and lower than it was at any point in H1 2010. The consumer is weak; corporations are relatively healthy. However, they are not mutually exclusive events. At some point, that gap will have to be closed. It will not be over the course of one summer, but over the next quarter or so, you should expect individual economic situation to factor in to equity market returns. Continue reading

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The Pricing of Risk: Yield Implications

Stop viewing Treasury yields from the perspective of opportunity. For a moment, consider what they imply about the pricing of risk. The concept, “I’m taking on more risk, therefore I need to earn more return” is often misapplied. Perhaps it should be restated as such, “If you take on more risk, in order to justify that additional risk, your return needs be higher to the less risky investment just to be equivalent.” Continue reading

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The Risk of the Unknown: A New Perspective on Equities

The objective of these viewpoints is to question commonly accepted pillars of financial advice. So I took notice when Consuelo Mack interviewed Lubos Pastor, Professor of Finance at the University of Chicago. Pastor recently completed research stating that stocks become more risky over longer investment horizons. His research takes the investor point of view (i.e. forward looking and accounting for uncertainty) rather than a historical (i.e. backward looking) point of view. Furthermore, he suggests that the 7% annualized real return stocks experienced during the last century–based on Jeremy Siegel’s analysis–is uncommonly high with several lucky events bolstering that figure. Pastor’s final pearl of wisdom suggests that human capital should play a significant role in portfolio construction. Continue reading

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