The stock market is a lot like weather in New England – wait a few minutes and it will surely change! In late February, as the wintry weather waned, Wall Street waxed, climbing a proverbial wall of worry.
What it Says About the Way Our Economy is Changing
Great article by Michael Porter of Harvard Business School about the importance of GE's decision to relocate its headquarters to Boston, not just because of what GE brings, but because of why it is coming.
GE's transformation over the last decade reflects how manufacturing is changing, the good things that portends for our economy and our competitiveness in global markets, but also the disruption it brings. Increasingly, the have and have not's will align along those who embrace change, and those stuck in old ways of thinking.
This has powerful implications going forward for our human capital -- one of our most valuable assets.
The best advice is too boring for TV, and not profitable enough on Wall Street.
Given recent weakness in the stock market, and financial media’s tendency to magnify every normal wiggle, this is as good a time as any to revisit some long term perspectives, and some of the do’s and don’ts of a market correction.
Patience will be a virtue in 2016. You find out who's been swimming naked when the tide goes out.
Your investment portfolio has been planned carefully within your financial and behavioral ability to accept risk. But the same can't be said for all investors, many of whom got too greedy in the last few years' bull market. They'll be forced to run for cover when the tide shifts. If you play it cool, you can benefit from their errors.
Employment Data, the Truth behind the Headlines
Terror attacks and the Market
November ended with slight declines for the month in target risk portfolios, but with healthy gains for the latest three month period, marking a recovery from the late summer and early fall correction.
James Bond usually gets roughed up pretty good as he goes about his missions, but invariably comes out golden in the end. And like 007’s infamous martini, global stocks markets were shaken in August and September, only to recover vigorously in October as the S&P had its best month since 2011 with an 8.4% return.
The sudden drop in the market has everyone looking for a culprit. The explanation may be much more elementary than you think, my dear Watson. Remember, the stock market predicts about twenty recessions for every one that actually occurs. In this case, stocks have been falling despite generally positive economic news. This suggests that the correction is probably technical, and not fundamental in nature.
Not even the sharpest living minds on investing have a good clue what’s coming next. Oracle of Omaha Warren Buffett admitted in May that he had been “wrong” about interest rates. Global investors continue to struggle in the quest for signs of what the future will look like – for interest rates, for China, for energy, for Greece. It’s an enigma everywhere, making the financial markets one of today’s greatest mysteries. Bruce Thompson spies the real culprit in the recent market decline.
Market Focus: Value and Dividend Stocks out of Fashion
As a style of investing, dividends have under-performed the market recently. Portfolios with an equity income emphasis have lagged the market in the last couple of years. While frustrating in the short run, the longer term picture tells a different story: focus on fundamentals, not trends. In fact, we can exploit trends – not by chasing them, but by faithfully diversifying and rebalancing.
The Road Less Travelled
Robert Frost’s famous poem, while not written with financial markets in mind, is nevertheless one for investors to consider. It is particularly relevant when investing in markets that are demonstrating strong trends that appear to have no end in sight. Eventually money will cycle around to the "road less travelled."