Market Commentary

Bears vs. Bulls – Who Wins?

Nope, this is not a Chicago sports piece. It is, however, a review of the storm and stress of the current Bull vs. Bear “conversation” pitting the emotional vs. the rational, the headlines vs. the fundamentals and the reactive vs. the steady.[…]

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Trying Time for Tech Stocks?

March 3rd, 2016
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Spillover from the recent global market rout has challenged the tech sector, and the stronger dollar isn’t helping either. Apple stated in its Q1 fiscal 2016 earnings that dollar appreciation cost it $5B in revenues – at constant currency, its revenues would have been $80.8B versus $75.9B.[…]

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Good News for Chinese Markets?

February 26th, 2016
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Good News for Chinese Markets? – Chinese equities markets have been plagued by several factors, but one of the more notable ones, in our view, is the constant government meddling. First, there was the unannounced currency devaluation of around 5% last August (and another to start the New Year),[…]

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Negative Interest Rates in the U.S.?

Janet Yellen raised eyebrows earlier this month when she hinted at the possibility of negative interest rates in the U.S. “We wouldn’t take those off the table” were her exact words. Since then, I’ve gotten a few questions about whether negative rates could be a useful tool in stimulating the economy or whether this is a sign of central banks grasping desperately for that objective.[…]

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Energy Companies Downgraded: Should You Be Worried?

February 24th, 2016
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The Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s ratings agencies recently downgraded energy giants like Chevron, EOG Resources, Royal Dutch Shell and Hass. Top-tier companies, once thought fairly insulated from oil’s downturn due to their sheer size, are now seen as under serious stress.[…]

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Will $1.1 Trillion Budget Boost U.S. Economy?

February 24th, 2016
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Last December, U.S. Congressional leaders surprised the markets with a massive agreement on year-end spending and tax breaks which helped lawmakers avoid yet another government shutdown, at least until September 2016. This deal was the broadest tax and spending deal since the January 2013 “fiscal cliff” agreement,[…]

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2016 U.S. Economy – Bumpy Road or Smooth Sailing?

February 24th, 2016
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According to the advance estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the U.S. economy stuttered in Q4 – growing a mere +0.7% from +2.0% growth in Q3.
Although this flattish growth was in-line with expectations, it has still created some worries.[…]

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4 Ways Monetary Policy Could Boost the Global Economy

The largest central banks around the world are making moves – just not necessarily in the same direction. While the U.S. Federal Reserve is tightening credit, the European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Japan (BOJ) are easing their monetary policies to stimulate their economies.[…]

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Should Dividend Cuts Spell Doom or Offer Hope?

Many investors dread dividend cuts as a sign of a company’s flagging financials. It follows that recent reports indicating that 2015’s count of dividend cuts exceeded that of 2008’s could spook shareholders.
On the forefront of the dividend cutting trend is,[…]

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Being “Greedy” When Others are Fearful

February 19th, 2016
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Being “Greedy” When Others are Fearful – it’s one of the oldest adages in investing and some of the world’s biggest investors are putting it to work. In Q4 2015, Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway opened a new 26.5 million stake in pipeline operator Kinder Morgan (ticker KMI),[…]

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