Delta Insights A Weekly Commentary on Investing

If We Can Agree on Growth, What Then?

September 10, 2021

The media highlights the polarization of opinions in America. From an investment standpoint, it can be instructive to consider what metrics the investment community agrees on rather than disagrees on. Knowing what the “market” believes to be the case allows an investor to position investments accordingly.

Hot Potato Cash

September 3, 2021

$100,000 invested in a traditional bank savings account earns an investor about $80 per year. The core CPI over the past twelve months increased by 4.45% through June.  To keep pace with inflation, the savings account would have to earn $4,450 per year, not $80.  The $100,000 investor in a bank savings account is effectively $4,370 poorer in real dollars (purchasing power) over the past year.

Bad News Gets Old

August 27, 2021

Investors have endured a steady stream of bad news from the Covid pandemic for well over a year.  As time passes, the Covid bad news gets old and investors are left with fresher good news.  Although Covid has been a persistent negative economic force, it is not stopping the steady progression towards a recovered economy.  For example, the second estimate of Q2 GDP growth released this week was 6.6%.  A 6.6% GDP growth report is a reminder that a recession is nowhere in sight and the bounce still has spring in it.

The Grass Is Greener

August 20, 2021

In June, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that 5.6 million people lost their jobs. Of the 5.6 million, 3.9 million quit. The 70% quit rate is an all-time high.

To have 70% of all job separations be a result of quits means lots of people seem to have high confidence that the economy is expanding and finding a better job in a reasonable time frame is likely.

By the Numbers

August 13, 2021

Let the numbers speak.

  • Share buyback announcements have totaled $683 billion year-to-date, the second largest total on record at this point in the calendar year.
  • US money market funds have AUM of $5.4 trillion, more than $1 trillion above balances at the start of 2020.
  • Despite the collapse in economic growth in 2020, S&P 500 sales declined by just 3%.

Go for the Gold

Augsut 6, 2021

Many of the athletes in Tokyo started their journeys 10 years ago. It started with a step, a throw, a swing. They have put in their 10,000+ hours. Some of the athletes have been honing their skill for more than 20 years. Going for the gold takes years of practice and planning. Planning for our golden years takes long term vision, commitment and hard work.

Low Interest Rates, Easy Money & Strong Earnings Feed the Bull

July 30, 2021

For the Bull to keep climbing, it needs to be fed. This week, the Bull was fed healthy doses of continued low interest rates, easy money and better-than-expected earnings. So far this earnings season, 90% of companies have exceeded consensus earnings expectations and over 80% are ahead of revenue estimates. Operating earnings will reach an all-time high this quarter.

Narrative Shift

July 23, 2021

Although the S&P 500 Index is enjoying a fairly smooth ride higher this year, there have been significant trend shifts below the surface.  There has been a narrative shift from Covid-under-control, government stimulus, rapid-reopening, inflation to Covid-not-so-much-under-control, peak growth, global slowdown.

Delta Variant Pushes Covid Stocks Higher

July 16, 2021

P.T. Barnum said, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” So far, the Delta Variant has had no impact on our web views and phone calls. Unfortunately, the Delta Variant has not been good news for most of the stock market with the exception of “Covid stocks.”

Productivity Growth

July 9, 2021

Economic output in the United States is at new all-time high.

The record level of output was achieved with 6.76 million fewer people working since pre-pandemic.

Dividend Outlook

July 2, 2021

The Federal Reserve released preliminary results of its Comprehensive Capital Analysis review of banks this week.  The banks included in the review have $175 billion of excess capital.  With the excess capital, many banks are increasing dividends and some have upped their stock buyback programs. 

Big Debt, Low Rates

June 25, 2021

Some analysts believe the Covid experience from a financial perspective was more like a war than a recession.  The shutting down and reopening of the economy and all of the government debt-financed support to make this happen seems more like a war effort than a market-driven recession.  In fact, government debt levels as a percent of GDP have not been this high since the end of World War 2.


June 18, 2021

As DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince recommended in their song Summertime, its “time to sit back and unwind.”  Covid restrictions are being lifted across the country.  The Federal Reserve says they will not raise rates until 2023.  The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) below 20 indicates investors are relatively calm.  If low volume traded is the measure, stock investors are unwinding.

Raise the Roof

June 11, 2021

Stocks rise as far as earnings growth, interest rates and investor risk appetite will allow.  If these metrics are moving in the wrong direction, it can place on ceiling on stock valuation.  Through March of this year, interest rates were rising and investor risk tolerance was flat to up.  Earnings growth has been good but is not expected to accelerate.  The S&P 500 traded sideways.

Inflation Hedge

June 4, 2021

To hedge is to protect oneself from an anticipated negative outcome.  Keeping your money in cash has an expected negative outcome over time.  The longer the duration, the worse the outcome.  The value of cash erodes with inflation.

Still Waters Run Deep

May 28, 2021

Amazon (AMZN) has traded sideways for almost a year.  Under the smooth surface of flat price performance, the 2021 earnings estimate increased by 26.5% and the 2022 estimate is up 36.3%.

Covid Long-Haul Effects: Higher Taxes

May 21, 2021

Some people who have had Covid-19 suffer from “long-haul” symptoms for months after they were first infected.  The CDC lists some of those symptoms as fatigue, headache, chest pain, shortness of breath, depression, etc.  Somewhat like negative physical symptoms, the economy is likely to suffer from negative “long-haul” economic symptoms as a result of Covid.  One of the more concerning potential long-haul symptoms are higher taxes for years to come.

Faster and Faster

May 14, 2021

During the Covid recession of 2020, the S&P 500 declined by about 34% in three weeks.  Five months later in August 2020, it had returned to its February 2020 high.  Over the next eleven months, the S&P 500 climbed another 25% higher.

Peak Growth?

May 7, 2021

Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Google represent 19% of the S&P 500 and 37% of the NASDAQ 100.  From April 27 through April 29, these four companies all reported significant upside to both revenues and earnings.  Google’s (Alphabet) revenues were up 34% y/y and the company authorized $50 billion in stock buybacks.  Microsoft’s revenues were up 19% y/y.  Apple’s revenues were up 54% year/year and the company authorized $90 billion in share buybacks. Amazon’s revenues were up 44% y/y.

Bull-Market Checklist

April 30, 2021

GDP Growth: Check; The Federal Reserve is predicting US GDP growth this year of 6.5% and 3.3% in 2022.

Corporate Earnings: Check; With more than a quarter of the S&P 500 companies reporting, 84% have exceeded EPS estimates with an average upside of 24%.  If this upside amount does not deteriorate as the rest of the S&P 500 reports, it will be the largest earnings surprise percentage reported by the S&P 500 since FactSet began tracking this metric in 2008...

Millennial Demand Wave

April 23, 2021

Modern stock market history is often referred to as beginning at the end of World War 2.  The Baby Boom generation (roughly 69.6 million people) is comprised of people born between 1946 and 1964.  Baby Boomers dominated economic activity during the second half of the 20th Century.  Baby Boomers were some of the most voracious consumers buying cars, TVs, homes, etc. like never before.  The great bull market of the 1980s and 1990s reflects much of the consumption appetite of Boomers.

Flood Tide

April 16, 2021

A rising tide lifts almost all boats.  In this case, we are experiencing a financial flood.  During the financial crisis of 2008, roughly $800 billion was spent on various bailouts.  Today, the U.S. government has spent roughly $10 trillion on Covid related stimulus/support.  Globally, there has been $31 trillion of government stimulus.

Bullish Spirits

April 9, 2021

The S&P 500 reached new all-time highs this week.  This achievement required valuation metrics to stretch even further.  The S&P 500 12-month forward P/E ratio is 22.5x today versus the 25-year average of 16.7x.

Feeling Better Post Covid

April 1, 2021

The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index jumped to 109.7 in March, up from a downwardly revised 90.4 in February.  Consumer confidence is at a 52-week high.  In aggregate, consumers’ spirits appear to be recovering from Covid.

An Open Question

March 26, 2021

Texas and Mississippi are 100% open and masks are not mandated.  Northern California, the most Covid closed region of the U.S., is reopening with restricted access to indoor dining, gyms and movie theaters.  Vaccines should be available to all Americans by the end of May.  The question of Open appeared to be shut.

Who’s in Charge?

March 19, 2021

Not former Supreme Allied Commander Europe, White House Chief of Staff Alexander Haig.  In 1981, following the assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan, Al declared “I am in control here.”  Just as it was in 1981, he is still not in charge today. Anxiety is not controlling the stock market currently either. 

Are Interest Rates Going Up?

March 12, 2021

We don’t know. What we mean when we say “we don’t know” is that it is too early to know if the trend has changed. The downtrend in the 10-year US treasury rate remains in place currently. This will be the case until the rate breaks two standard deviations above the trend line on a sustained basis.


March 5, 2021

Interest in inflation is inflating. Google Trends shows “inflation” is at peak popularity, up 100% year-to-date. The last two times “inflation” searches on Google were this popular was 2004 and 2008.

When Do We Become Fixed Income Investors?

February 26, 2021

We buy financial assets to make a return on our money. The more return we seek, usually the more risk we accept. When risk-free assets offer almost no return (for example the one-month U.S. treasury rate is 0.06%), most investors are willing to accept some risk for some return.

We Are Not Japan, Yet

February 19, 2021

In the 1970s and 1980s, Japan had a world leading economy. They were an export powerhouse with industry-leading manufacturing sophistication and quality. The Japan Nikkei 225 Stock Market Index reached an all-time high in late 1989.

Springboard for Higher Equity Valuations

February 12, 2021

Goldman Sachs says they are seeing the “most accommodative financial conditions on record.” What this means is we have a springboard for higher equity valuations. The “springs” in the springboard are:

Steady Hand of the Bond Market

February 5, 2021

The equity waters have been choppy the past couple of weeks. We have seen high stock volatility, particularly in heavily shorted stocks. The poster child of stock volatility lately is Gamestop (GME) which was roughly $20 per share three weeks ago, reached a high of $483 and is now roughly $66. Even Apple (AAPL) traded from about $127 last Monday to a high of $145 and back down to $130 earlier this week.

Caught Off Base

January 29, 2021

Much of the trading in the modern stock market is done by hedge funds and computers. It is trading activity that sets prices in the short-term. There are times when the largest and most active traders are caught off base.

This Recession Was Different

January 22, 2021

There is a high probability the 2020 COVID-19 economic shock will be officially sanctioned as a recession by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). But being awarded this title does not mean it was similar to previous recessions.

Trend Boost

January 15, 2021

The stock market is in a strong, upward trend. Micro-cap stocks are in a really strong, upward trend. Through the first seven trading days of 2021, the Russell Micro Cap Index is up 9.4% which is the best start for the index since its inception in 2007. By contrast, the S&P 500 index was up 1.2% during this first trading week of 2021.

Rising Above the Chaos

January 8, 2021

Despite the chaos on Capitol Hill, the stock market moves higher. Often, chaos raises investor uncertainty which places downward pressure on stock prices. But not this time.

Blackjack! 21 Beats 20 – Happy New Year 2021!

December 31, 2020

The number question we hear from investors is how can the stock market can be at all-time highs when the world is under siege from the COVID pandemic. Some things are hard to explain. “The market is forward looking. Not all businesses are suffering. The market is telling us things will be better.” Like Annie sang, “The sun’ll come out tomorrow, bet your bottom dollar.”

Passive Expansion

December 24, 2020

n 1992, Vanguard launched its Total Stock Market Index (VITSX) fund. At the end of its first year, it had $512 million of assets. Today, assets exceed $1 trillion. Passive mutual funds and Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) now represent about half of the stock market. At the end of last year, there were roughly 6,970 ETFs and 7,945 mutual funds (not all of these funds are passive) versus roughly 3,670 public companies (U.S. stocks).

Lots and Lots of Money and Low, Low Rates

December 18, 2020

Congress is about to pass another COVID relief bill which is expected to put an additional $900 billion in to the U.S. economy. The Federal Reserve is buying $80 billion worth of U.S. treasury securities every month and at least $40 billion worth of mortgage-backed securities. Since March, the Fed has expanded its balance sheet by over $3 trillion.

The Good Old Days

December 11, 2020

From August 1999 to March 2000, the NASDAQ index appreciated from about 2,500 to 5,000. At the time, “NASDAQ 5000” seemed mind-boggling high. Day trading was popular. Buying almost any stock made investors feel intelligent as the overall market was making a historic bull move. “NASDAQ 5000” became an adjective to describe conspicuous consumption.

End of Year Considerations

December 4, 2020

2020 is almost over. Trading volumes fall off significantly around mid-December. Generally, you should attempt to complete your 2020 stock market/account management activities by December 18.

The Case for International Stocks

November 25, 2020

The U.S. stock market has been the best performing large economy stock market over the past decade.

Delta 2021 Outlook

November 20, 2020

The stock market almost always has positive calendar year returns during years the economy does not experience a recession. We do not foresee a recession in 2021 making the probability of enjoying a positive investment year in U.S. equities high.

Crash Course: Interest Rates and Stock Values

November 13, 2020

Stocks are categorized by size (small vs. large) and type (growth vs. value). During 2020, large capitalization growth stocks significantly outperformed the rest of the stock market. Year-to-date through November 9, the five largest stocks (all growth stocks) of the S&P 500 are up collectively 48% versus the remaining 495 stocks which are up 4%.

Election Results

November 6, 2020

From an investment perspective, the election results are in.

Uncertainty and volatility collapsed. In advance of the election, many investors were anxious and bought insurance (via put options on the S&P 500) to protect their stock portfolios. Apparently, fear may have been overblown and the insurance protection is being unwound. Technically, unwinding put option insurance creates buying pressure. Fundamentally, less anxious investors are more willing to own risk assets.

Certain Uncertainty

October 30, 2020

Since 1788 and thanks to George Washington, the most popular president of all-time, we have held presidential elections once every four years. The four-year presidential cycle in the U.S. is certain. What is uncertain is who will win the election. On, or shortly after, election day (Tuesday, November 3, 2020), we gain certainty on who won.

Bank on It

October 23, 2020

The ping-pong like back-and-forth action of the bailout debate and the presidential election have narrowed the scope of headline news and captivated investor attention. Hey, we are in earnings season! The major banks reported last week and said important things that appear to have gone mostly unnoticed.

18 More Days

October 16, 2020

In 18 more days, the presidential election will take place. We have had one raucous debate. Trump has questioned the validity of an election dominated by mail-in ballots and has suggested he may not accept the election result if it is not favorable to him. The drama so far has caused the upcoming election to be one of the leading sources of anxiety for investors.

Conversation with Hundred Billion Dollar Manager

October 9, 2020

We are in the fourth quarter of one of the most unusual stock market years in history. The economy experienced peak output and then one of the most severe recessions in history. We are 25 days from a presidential election. The economy is beset by COVID-19 while stocks have reached all-time highs.

The Fourth Quarter

October 2, 2020

On September 30, the last day of the third quarter, the S&P 500 (SPY) closed at 3,363 and is +5.5% YTD. Given that 837,000 people filed initial unemployment claims this week and 11.7 million people are receiving continuing unemployment claims, the S&P 500 is performing surprisingly well. The market cap-weighted index is benefiting from mega cap technology companies. The equal weighted S&P 500 (RSP) is -4.8% YTD.

COVID-19, Market Wave 3

September 25, 2020

The COVID crisis is impacting the stock market in waves. Wave 1 struck in March with a mandated global economic shutdown and 35% market collapse. Wave 2 arrived mid-summer with a significant rise in confirmed cases and renewed business closures. Between the June 8 high and June 15 low, the S&P 500 lost about 8% of its value. Despite a brief pullback in June, the S&P 500 quickly looked through the case spike partly because the number of deaths remained low, expectations of additional federal stimulus, record low interest rates and further economic reopening later in the year.


September 18, 2020

The S&P 500 energy sector ETF (XLE) is down over 40% year-to-date. EEK! It is the worst performing sector of the S&P year-to-date, down by more than twice as much as the next worst performing sector, financials (XLF -17%). These are the only S&P 500 industry sectors with double digit declines YTD.

Big Spender

September 11, 2020

The U.S. economy is measured by its Gross Domestic Product (GDP). GDP is a summation of economic activity by individuals, businesses and government. Over the past 45 years, government expenditures have contributed about one third of GDP. In a COVID-19 world with many business activities restricted and record amounts of federal stimulus, government expenditures now represent over half of all U.S. economic activity.

Let Inflation (and the Stock Market) Run

September 4, 2020

Chairman Powell of the Federal Reserve says the Fed would like to see inflation average at about 2% rather than be capped at 2%. To the ears of investors, this statement translates into low rates for even longer. Inflation is running well below the Fed’s 2% average target.

Crossing the Karman Line

August 28, 2020

Occasionally, markets rocket higher. In 1998, between July 21 and October 8, the NASDAQ lost about 33% of its value. The NASDAQ then appreciated by 278% from about 1,357 to 5,132 on March 10, 2000. The fuel was investor enthusiasm for the endless growth possibilities of the Internet.

Getting Ahead of COVID-19

August 21, 2020

China and much of Western Europe seems to be well ahead of the United States in managing the prevalence of COVID-19 and in re-opening economically. In China, mall traffic is back to about 85% of pre-COVID levels and China domestic air travel is fully recovered.

Interest versus Dividend

August 14, 2020

When is the best time to plant a tree? Many years ago. When is the second-best time to plant a tree? Now. The same goes for investing. The best time to invest was a long time ago. Given the best option may no longer be available, the second-best time is now. Like a tree, investments generally grow over time.

Adding Up the Numbers

August 7, 2020

The total civilian labor force of the U.S. is roughly 160 million persons. The labor force includes all people “16 years of age and older residing in the 50 states and the District of Columbia who are not inmates of institutions (e.g., penal and mental facilities, homes for the aged), and who are not on active duty in the Armed Forces.”


Google This: “Next July”

July 31, 2020

Google (Alphabet) is a California headquartered company. California is mostly shut-down. San Mateo is the only coastal county still open from Mendocino all the way to the Mexican border.

Small-Cap Catch-Up

July 24, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has created significant uncertainty. For the most part, the stock market has held up surprisingly well with the S&P 500 now having a small positive gain for the year. The key bullish drivers have been tremendous monetary/fiscal stimulus and an acceleration to on-line commerce which is benefiting the very large capitalization companies in the market..

Commodity Prices Signal Global Recovery

July 17, 2020

Copper prices are largely influenced by the health of the global economy. Copper is used in power generation and transmission, construction, factory equipment and electronics. Copper prices are used as a leading indicator by some economists. Lumber, oil and silver are similar to copper as their prices measure global supply and demand. Many commodity prices are trading at 52-week highs.

The COVID-19 Defensive Trade Lifts Markets

July 10, 2020

COVID-19 is a major driver of trading activity since February. At the start of the crisis, the obvious projection was to say an economic shut-down would severely curtail economic activity and the equity market would suffer. For the first month, this is what happened. The S&P 500 declined by about 35% from late February into March.

Hyper Speed Creates Uncertainty

July 3, 2020

J.P. Morgan Asset Management calculates the recession that began in March ended in May. The pace of change in the markets and the economy is moving at record speed. The pace of change is creating apparent dichotomies that make the investment landscape confusing. The Covid-19 headline news is persistently negative. Corporate earnings are forecast to fall by about 44% in the second quarter. Yet, the NASDAQ is at record highs and the S&P 500 is close to breakeven after enjoying its best quarterly performance in the past 22 years.

An Expected Rise

June 26, 2020

Two months ago, the U.S. reached a single-day record of 34,203 new Covid-19 infections. This week on Wednesday, we set a new daily high of 38,115. A rise in Covid cases should not come as a surprise given social distancing requirements are being relaxed, testing has increased and there were mass protests over the past several weeks. Several states are contemplating plans to slow down the reopening process.

Surprising Strength

June 19, 2020

You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time” - Abraham Lincoln.

Low Inflation, Cheap Oil – Multi-Year Investment Implications

June 12, 2020

Predicting the future price of oil may be one of the most difficult assignments for a financial analyst. In the past twelve years, crude oil prices moved in a range of $150/barrel to $20/barrel. At one point this year, crude oil futures prices were negative $40/barrel. In the past month and a half, the price of crude oil has doubled.

Pandemic, Riots, Presidential Election, War: A Good Year for Investing

June 5, 2020

Pandemic, riots, presidential election and war sounds a lot like 2020. What these words best describe, however, is 1968.
• The H3N2 pandemic (avian influenza A virus originating in China) killed an estimated one to four million people worldwide and about 100,000 in the U.S.

Technically Even Stronger

May 29, 2020

Last week, the Delta Insights newsletter highlighted the building technical strength of the stock market. The S&P 500 gained strength this week and is now above its 200-day moving average. Momentum usually has persistence and a crossover above the 200-day moving average is a widely used positive momentum indicator.

Technically Strong, Fundamentally Rich

May 22, 2020

When is the best time to plant a tree? Many years ago. When is the second-best time to plant a tree? Now. The same goes for investing. The best time to invest was a long time ago. Given the best option may no longer be available, the second-best time is now. Like a tree, investments generally grow over time.

COVID-19 Phase Shift Change

May 15, 2020

COVID-19 is accelerating change in a way that Influenza, Ebola, Rabies, Polio, SARS, Smallpox, HIV and Dengue did not. COVID-19 shut down most of the major economies of the world. Some of the immediate consequences of the shut-down are extraordinary unemployment and all-time high Federal debt levels. Hopefully, these changes will not be permanent. .

Time of Exposure

May 8, 2020

You can pass your hand quickly through flame and feel virtually no pain. If your hand is held to the flame, it will burn. How long the COVID-19 crisis lasts will greatly determine how much economic pain will be felt.

Green Shoots in a Hot Market

May 1, 2020

Expansion, recession, collapse and recovery…all at once. In February, the first quarter GDP growth was expected to be about 3% (expansion). First quarter GDP (advance estimate) was reported this week at -4.8%. It is almost certain that 2Q GDP growth will be substantially more negative. Two sequential quarters of negative GDP growth is the definition of recession.

Groundhog Day

April 24, 2020

COVID-19 has much of America caught in a loop when every day seems the same. Businesses are closed and we wait to see what happens next. Repeat.

COVID-19 Winners and Losers

April 17, 2020

By March 23, the S&P 500 had declined roughly 35% from its all-time high on February 19. It was the fastest transition from bull to bear market in the past 120 years.

Peak in Sight

April 9, 2020

According to the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), the peak usage in the United States for total hospital beds, intensive care beds and ventilators is April 11, 2020. The peak in deaths per day is projected to be April 12. Total U.S. deaths are projected to reach 60,415 by August 4. 60,415 deaths are a greatly reduced estimate from the roughly 100,000-240,000 projected a couple of weeks ago..

Taking the Temperature of the Market

April 3, 2020

COVID-19 causes some people, including healthy young people, to require intensive care and ventilation. In advance, we do not know who will suddenly require intensive care. Most people who get COVID-19 suffer minor symptoms and will recover at home.

Bear Market Signposts

March 27, 2020

The mandated economic shutdown and corresponding collapse in asset values (stocks and bonds) as a result of COVID-19 seems unprecedented. In about a month, the economy transitioned from economic expansion to severe contraction and bear market. From the February 19 high in the S&P 500 to the low on March 23, the market was down 35.4%.


March 20, 2020

We have collectively pressed “Pause” on the economy. Having the economy come to a stand‑still is unlike anything we have experienced in our lifetimes. Typically, recessions are part of a cycle…

Bear Shock

March 13, 2020

The stock market sell-off from the high on February 19th (down 20%) is the fastest on record, 15 trading days…

A Whole New (Fixed Income) World

March 6, 2020

A week ago, the Fed Funds futures were pricing in a 100% chance that the Fed would cut the Fed Funds rate by the March 18th meeting…

What If?

February 28, 2020

What if the current outbreak of coronavirus spreads significantly more than expected? This is the question the market is attempting to discount into stock prices…

Whoomp! There It Is

February 21, 2020

The Leading Economic Index (LEI) is an important indicator of recession risk. When the six-month moving average of the percent change month/month turns negative, recession risk is elevated. For the past three months, this has been the case.

LovE Is Prevalent

February 14, 2020

When we say LovE, we are referring to Leverage and Equity. Goldman Sachs prime brokerage (custodian for a significant number of hedge funds) reports they saw the largest net buying of Equities by hedge funds in nearly five months. Net Leverage increased as well.

Signs of Life

February 7, 2020

1. Manufacturing

In the fourth quarter of 2019, GM reopened 30 factories after a month-and-a-half strike. On January 15, the U.S. and China signed a Phase One trade deal. This week, China announced it will reduce tariffs by 50% next Friday on $75 billion worth of imported goods from the U.S.

Getting Behind the Numbers, Time to Panic?

January 31, 2020

Delta uses the Leading Economic Index (LEI) as a predictive indicator of recession. Four of the past five months have shown negative month-over-month readings. On a stand-alone basis, this is not bullish.

New Home Sales vs. Leading Economic Index?

January 24, 2020

Niners vs. Chiefs? Ali vs. Frazier? Monitor vs. Merrimack? Some questions are just really tough to answer in advance. Two well matched forces with only one possible winner.

Finally Time to Go Abroad?

January 17, 2020

The U.S. stock market (S&P 500) has dramatically outperformed both international developed and emerging markets since the start of 2009.

Stock Market Lessons of War

January 10, 2020

For the past thirty years, the United States military has been highly active in the Middle East. Some of the activity has been initiated by the United States including the events listed below. In three out of four cases, the stock market was up over the next twelve months.

Looking into the New Year

January 3, 2020

A New Year and new decade is underway. On the first trading day of last year, the S&P 500 opened at 2,476.96 which was 15x the forward twelve-month earnings. 2020 began with the S&P 500 at 3,244.67 and 18.2x the expected forward twelve-month earnings. From a valuation perspective, one might conclude the S&P 500 is less attractive today than it was twelve months ago. In the next several weeks, we will see important data points that should provide more clarity on the attractiveness of stocks.