“A groundhog is like most other prophets;
it delivers its prediction and then disappears”
In our office we frequently make sport of the countless headlines we encounter on a daily basis from various media outlets across the web. These headlines are often splashed across the “home” pages of market or financial sites—though often across mainstream “news” outlets,Read More
US equity markets have seen what we would describe as mild volatility over the last few weeks, mostly attributed to geopolitical tensions emanating from the Ukraine-Russia belligerence. For the first quarter, the S&P 500 rose 1.30%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the NASDAQ composite were both down slightly.
This lack of any meaningful gain from the major indices is just fine with us, frankly. As we pointed out in our previous Outlooks,Read More
It cost $0.32 to mail a letter, unemployment was 4.9%, O.J. Simpson was found liable in a civil suit, Hong Kong was returned to Chinese rule, Timothy McVeigh was sentenced to Death, Green Bay defeated the Patriots in the Super Bowl, Titanic came crashing into movie theatres, and Dolly, the first genetically engineered lamb was unveiled to the public; the year was 1997.
1997 also held the distinction of being the year that produced the highest return of the S&P 500 (+31.01%) within the last 16 years—until it was narrowly eclipsed by 2013’s index return of 32.39%.Read More
We’ve felt a reticence to begin writing market commentary for the third quarter with the partial government shut-down now in its fourth day. The sentiment revolves around a general premonition that “everything could change” on a dime with a political resolution (or a deepening) of already entrenched positions in Washington, thus rendering our commentary moot. But we think that would make us guilty of a fallacy we often caution our client’s against—that of paralysis or impulsion in the face of soap-opera dramas presented by the news media,Read More
Last year we were looking for US economic growth in the 2%-3% range, an improved investing environment here in the US as well as a stabilizing of non-US and particularly developing markets. While US GDP growth will likely be confirmed at the low-end of that range, clearly the stock market trumped our single digit expectations in 2012, and pockets of expected volatility were shorter-lived, and tamer in scope than we expected.
With the benefit of hind-sight,Read More
In June we quoted Alexis de Toqueville with regard to the developed world’s attempt to come to grips with fiscal burdens of increasingly hefty magnitudes. With the 2012 national elections behind us, we’ll return to his observations of American democracy;
“In democracy, we get the government we deserve.”
The tongue-in-cheek implication here being that the November 7th results have left us with precisely the balance of power that existed on November 6th.Read More
“The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design”–Friedrich A. Hayek
As we approach the mid-point of the year, we can’t help but feel that we’ve seen this movie before; a relatively optimistic first quarter—followed with evidence of slowing growth—resulting in heightened volatility in the second and third quarters (often accompanied by external shocks), and ultimately ending in a fourth quarter rally based on renewed optimism that what didn’t transpire this year may transpire next.Read More
We commented in January that “we expect the continued, gradual growth rate of the US (2%-3%) to support an ultimately improved investment climate domestically—but we are convinced we will remain in a low-return environment…” The troubling issue for us as investors now is that we continue to be convinced that both parts of that statement remain true, and yet most major domestic equity indexes finished up the first quarter in (or near) double-digit return territory.Read More
By now most of us have read our fill of 2011 post-mortems—but we’re compelled to add a few thoughts of our own before we look ahead, seeking to apply the experience and perspectives gained to our outlook on global markets in 2012.
A year ago we remarked on three items which we saw as potential underpinnings of a better year both economically and market-wise than we actually ended up with. They were; 1) the expectations borne out of the Fed’s QE2 policy announcement in late 2010,Read More
This past quarter we’ve witnessed Europe’s fiscal issues finally metastasize into banking issues (Belgium’s Dexia)—long feared—as their politicians, like our own, have made an art form of “kicking the can down the road”.
Most would agree that our current locale is now “down the road”, both in Europe and here in the US; and we’re looking at that same “can” once again. This metaphor perhaps best explains the severe volatility we’ve seen in the markets over the previous few months—and may continue to see in the future.Read More
We have made general market commentaries in many recent portfolio reviews on the seemingly déjà vu aspects to this Spring and Summer’s market movements, and accompanying economic and fiscal “narrative” as compared to those of a year ago.
To briefly recap; the current state of the US stock market is one that is down from its early April highs. Along the way this year have been numerous hurdles for investor sentiment to clear,Read More
A client of ours called about 5 or 6 weeks ago in a bit of a panic. In fairness, it wasn’t just this client—there were several—but for some reason this particular conversation comes to mind. In short, the client’s question seemed to be when (not if) to get out of the market. Of course the Dow and the S&P 500 at the time had fallen 6.7% & 7.0% respectively from their recent highs,Read More
CCR Wealth Management greets the New Year with more sanguine market and economic reflections for our clients’ consideration—at last! We view the confluence of several events over the last few months as constructive in nurturing an anemic US economic growth rate to more robust recovery in the next 12 to 24 months.
1) Quantitative easing announced by Ben Bernanke in September, begun in earnest in November, and scheduled to continue through the spring of 2011,Read More
As we approach the end of another calendar year, we reflect not just on the events and developments of 2010, but on the decade that this month concludes. We think it’s an opportune moment to deliberately step back from the trees, and to view the forest. Doing so, in some ways, offers a mental respite from what has seemingly been a fast-paced cacophony of micro-financial, economic and political shrapnel for the last thirty months or so.Read More
The market volatility we have all experienced in the last two weeks, and especially the last few days has all investors understandably on-edge. “Words of Wisdom” that attempt to explain recent global sell-offs, rallies, and outline the near future (given the present circumstances), run the risk of getting too far out in front of ever-evolving current events to effectively inform strategy.
We do, however, think there are some imperative perspectives CCR Wealth Management feels all investors should bear in mind today:
- News over the weekend of the US credit downgrade by Standard &
At we write, stocks are off some 12.5% from their April 26 highs (as measured by the S&P 500). As investors ourselves, we share the nauseating feeling with our clients at seeing recent 200, 300, and 700 point intra-day drops in the Dow—we’ve been here before, only too recently. However, as investment professionals, believe it or not we are somewhat relieved to finally see a meaningful correction of what has been an eleven month,Read More
“A cynic is not merely one who reads bitter lessons from the past,
he is one who is prematurely disappointed in the future.”
-Sidney J. Harris
The Dow Jones Industrial Average traversed over 4154 points in 2009—equating to a 64.36% rise from the March lows—accomplished in less than 9 months! While we were surprised the markets went on to establish fresh lows early in 2009 from the November ’08 bottom,Read More