This week, as I pack my bags for Europe, I found myself on the phone with a D.C. think-tank to discuss the future-not just for the next year, but for the next decade.
Folks, it was not an altogether uplifting discussion...
My aim here is not to spout personal opinions, take a political stance, or convince anyone to run for the hills or pop more champagne.
Like Switzerland, I'll aim to stay as neutral as possible (except when talking about markets) and simply report what was discussed-hitting the broad themes and thus allowing each of you to draw your own conclusions.
Thereafter, you can decide if we are staring down the barrel of either 1) more central-bank-driven bliss ahead or 2) pitchforks, gun smok,e and angry mobs.
As the fireworks dim and empty champagne bottles litter a table, beach, or kitchen near you, we can turn toward the markets and 2020 with open eyes and fairly easy signals. In short, and as will come as no surprise... Read more »
Welcome back to What's Happening Now, our last Monday report for an eventful year in which equity markets reached for the stars in an undeniably strong year-end rally which we called in early October.
Investors are closing out 2019 $6 trillion richer, with the S&P 500 Index up 29% and the Nasdaq up a whopping 36% heading into the last two trading days of the year-a classic melt-up driven by low rates, bail outs and money printing.
No shocker there-debt and bailouts are the Fed's new "growth industry."
So, out with 2019 and in with 2020.
The bustle of a New Year is often refreshing. That sense of a fresh-start at midnight this Tuesday can seem cleansing as we leave another Fed party behind us while reaching for champagne with friends and family.
It's striking to us though, as we close 2019 and page through the Main Street Media, that another recession seems almost unimaginable - priced out for some given the yearend rally, or ruled out by others as just unthinkable.
Welcome back to What's Happening Now in this holiday-shortened week. We too will be brief, although we did want to share a number of yearend thoughts on what's been naughty and what's been nice as the focus shifts from 2019 to 2020.
As we head full-bore into 2020, below we tackle a question posed by many bemused bears and fervent bulls alike, namely: Has the Fed's money printer outlawed recessions?
That is, can we artificially print our way past the lessons of market history, the forces of natural price cycles or the otherwise painful consequences of debt by simply counterfeiting our way into a new market scenario where every economic nail can be solved by one of two Fed "hammers," i.e.-(1) the power to print and (2) the power to repress interest rates?
Today, the partisanship out of DC, from where I’m overlooking the Jefferson memorial, is nearly unbearable. Red vs blue is everywhere-especially in the media circus. As for Wall Street, a similar war is playing out between bulls and bears. We... Read more »
Welcome back to What’s Happening Now, our weekly digest of what’s going on that could impact your portfolio. A strong November jobs report last week topped the news, which is likely to keep that all-important yet inherently flawed unemployment number... Read more »
We all remember the Twilight Zone, Rod Sterling’s classic American T.V. franchise back in 1959 in which Sterling invited viewers into a “5th dimension middle ground that lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge.”... Read more »