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October 1, 2018

October 1, 2018

Stocks surged at the open this morning (Dow +250 pts; SPX +.65%). Materials, industrial and energy sectors are all up over 1% in early trading. Only the most interest rate sensitive sectors—utilities and real estate—are in the red. The VIX Index fell below 12 and most global equities rallied. Even Chinese markets participated last night (Shanghai Composite +1%). The dollar is a little stronger today and commodities are mixed. Gold, copper and iron ore are falling in price, whereas WTI crude oil is up around $73.90/barrel. Despite trade war fears, global oil demand is healthy and the perceived constraint—what with trade sanctions in Iran & assorted problems in Venezuela—is supply. Bonds are mixed in early trading. Longer-term Treasuries are selling off a bit. The 10-year Treasury yield backed up to 3.06%. On the other hand, junk bonds are surging after a new trade deal with Canada was announced (see below).


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

June 26, 2017

The major stock market averages climbed briefly at the open, but quickly turned around. The Dow is up 40 pts, the SPX is up .2% and the Nasdaq is flat. “Waffling” has become a consistent pattern throughout June, according to CNBC’s Jim Cramer. “The market can’t make up its mind.” In addition, we’re seeing huge dispersion of returns from sector to sector, and from stock to stock.  For example, healthcare is screaming higher (+6%) this month, while energy has sagged .5%. And even within the energy sector, Chevron (CVX) is up 1.3% this month but Schlumberger (SLB) is down 5%. Mr. Cramer rightly points out that “nothing is trading in unison.” The VIX Index continues to trade near record lows (below 10 today), but while the SPX looks like it is simply treading water, there is a lot going on under the hood. 


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

April 12, 2017

Stocks opened lower again this morning, in what has become a familiar pattern. We’ll see if (like yesterday) most of the downside is reversed by the end of the session. At the moment, the Dow is down 50 pts and the SPX is down .44%. Consumer staples and utilities, the most defensive sectors, are trading higher. The worst-performing groups are the transports, banks and small-caps. In fact, the banks are now negative for 2017. The VIX Index is now up around 15.6, but VIX May futures are trading down around 14.7. The dollar is lower as one might expect; commodities are mostly higher. WTI crude oil ($53.40/barrel) is being propped up by rumors that Russia and Saudi Arabia are keen on keeping a lid on OPEC oil production. Bonds are trading higher again, with yields lower. The 10-year Treasury yield is down to 1.82%. It looks poised to test support at 1.80%.


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

March 7, 2017

Stocks opened lower but quickly recovered. The Dow and SPX are now flat and down .1%, respectively. Tech is the best-performing sector, up .4%, thanks to semiconductors. Most other major groups—gold miners, biotechs, retailers, transpors, banks, energy producers—are flat to down in early trading. The VIX Index is hovering around 11.3. The dollar is slightly stronger on the day and commodities are mostly lower. They deserve a breather after a pretty strong run. Copper and gold are up 4-6% so far this year; iron ore is up 19%; the iShares Global Agricultural Producers ETF (VEGI) is up 4%. WTI crude oil has been very stable above $52/barrel so far in 2017. 


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

February 7, 2017

Stocks opened higher this morning (Dow +47 pts; SPX +.1%). And by the way, the Nasdaq just touched a new record high. Gains are fairly widespread: retailers, transports, semiconductors, biotechs, REITs. But again today, the energy sector isn’t participating in the rally. WTI crude oil is down 1.4% to trade around $52.20/barrel. The VIX Index is down around 11.2 suggesting very little fear among traders. The dollar has been rising for the last week or so and all else equal, that should put some downward pressure on commodity prices. Bonds aren’t doing much today. The most likely direction for yields over the long-term is upward, but when the Fed passed on a chance to raise rates last week, that had a settling effect on bonds across the curve. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are trading at 1.85% and 2.41%, respectively. 


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

November 4, 2016

Stocks opened modestly higher this morning (Dow +25 pts; SPX +.25%). The healthcare sector is rebounding (+1%) on strength in biotechs. Banks, transports and telecoms are also in the green. The dollar is a bit weaker today and WTI crude oil is holding steady around $44.70/barrel. Bonds are rising in price this morning. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are back down to 1.24% and 1.78%, respectively.


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

September 29, 2016

The major stock market averages opened lower this morning (Dow -55 pts; SPX -.3%). Utilities and healthcare are the worst-performing groups in early trading. Banks, transports and retailers are modestly higher. The dollar and commodities are flat. WTI crude oil is up modestly to $47.30/barrel. Bonds are trading a bit lower as yields tick higher. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are currently hovering around 1.15%, and 1.59%, respectively. 


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.