June 25, 2015 Perspective
We have reached the halfway point for 2015, and if you look at the indexes, most are about where they were at the beginning of the year. Dow +1.6%, S & P 500 +3%, Transportation Index -7%, Utilities -8%, and Corporate Bonds -1%. Bucking the trend is the Smallcap Index +6.5%, the Nasdaq sector +9%, and the International Index at +7%.
March 26, 2015 Perspective
The volatility in the equity markets continues to be present as we alluded to in our February Comment. What is interesting is that this year to date, the leading sectors have flip-flopped from those of the last quarter of 2014. Small and Mid Cap firms are beating the Large Cap stocks at this writing about 6% compared to 2% year to date. The stronger dollar is affecting the exports of the large multinational firms and hurting their bottom line. The smaller companies are not as much affected since most of their sales are in the U.S.
February 19, 2015 Perspective
As tax season quickly approaches, the scramble begins to organize the reams of paper and forms it takes to prepare a return. Add to that frustration the news coming from the IRS that due to budget cuts, their service will be very poor this year and refunds will be delayed, and you get the feeling the system is broken.
October 14, 2014 Perspective
For the past year or so we have opined that we are in a secular bull market which may very well have many years left to run. It has also been stated that during these cycles market values tend to correct every four or five years. Since the beginning of this year the expectation of a 10-12% correction happening sometime this year was very real due to historical odds. With volatility returning to the major market indexes this past week, the question quickly has turned to “are we in a bear market”? To be sure, market moves of more than 1.5% both up and down every day since last Tuesday, investors have become very nervous. In actuality though, the S & P 500 is down 6% from its all-time high less than one month ago.
April 23, 2014 Perspective
The volatility we have seen in the markets over the past month can be chalked up to what analysts call “sector rotation” This occurs when one sector that has generated large gains over the recent period suddenly becomes overvalued in the eyes of traders, and is sold off in a concerted effort to lock in profits. These periods of momentum can last for months or years until, without warning, they are hit hard by profit takers.
March 5, 2014 Perspective
Equity markets here in the States have recently reached all-time highs once again. The time for the naysayers has begun again with predictions of another major decline in stock values. The analysts we follow and communicate with do not see a significant drop in the near future. In fact, the next few years look quite positive to the majority that we talk to. No one ever knows for certain what short term gyrations will occur. The following excerpt taken from one of the greatest investors of our period is very timely. We hope you enjoy the comments.
As another year ends, we look back and reflect on a year that many thought would be tough for the markets. Equities started off the year moving higher and except for a slight pullback in June due to the Federal Reserve’s comments about stopping their quantitative easing program, continued to make new highs right into this year’s end. Declines due to worries over inflation, Syria, Iran and the various political scandals never materialized leaving the majority of investors sitting on the sidelines missing the year’s gains.