A lot has changed in the past few weeks, both in terms of expectations for interest rates and lost confidence in the health of the banking system as a result of the sharp rise in interest rates that has led to some things “breaking,” as we wrote about here last week. Here we share some thoughts on who’s to blame for the ongoing banking crisis and reiterate how we are telling investors to adjust, or not adjust, their asset allocations in light of ongoing market volatility.
Wading Through Financal Stability Risks an Action Plan | Weekly Market Commentary | March 20, 2023
The Federal Reserve (Fed) has a history of raising short-term interest rates until something “breaks.” Considering the Fed has raised rates from a near-zero level to 4.75% (upper bound) over the course of only one year, it was almost a near certainty this time would be no different. Recent bank failures suggest things are indeed starting to break.
Latest Equity Asset Alocation Views | Weekly Market Commentary | March 13, 2023
Coming into the week, it was all about Federal Reserve (Fed) Chair Jerome Powell’s congressional testimony and the February jobs report. Instead, we got a shockingly fast collapse of a financial institution with over $200 billion in assets, which turned the market’s focus toward the stability of the banking system and what systemic risks banks might be facing. This commentary is focused on our asset allocation views, but no doubt the Silicon Valley Bank saga will require more attention from investors in the days ahead.
No Landing = No Sense | Weekly Market Commentary | March 6, 2023
Suggesting an economy makes “no landing” makes no sense. Analogies eventually break down, especially this one. Economic activity does not stop like an airplane eventually does, but rather the economy will settle into a steady state where growth is consistent with factors such as population and productivity. Here we take a look at some factors that illustrate how the economy is struggling to find a stable growth path.
Debt Ceiling Primer | Weekly Market Commentary | February 27, 2023
While concerns about the debt ceiling have been increasing, markets, businesses, and the economy are likely to see only minimal impact until we are days, or maybe a few weeks, from the “x date,” the date on which the federal government will no longer be able to meet all its obligations, likely in the summer or early fall.
What’s Changed and What It Could Mean | Weekly Market Commentary | February 21, 2023
Market relationships to interest rates have been turned upside down. And many of last year’s losers are this year’s winners, and vice versa. Here we take a look at some of the biggest changes in the market environment so far in 2023 and what those changes could mean for investors over the balance of the year.
Trying to Stick to the Landing | Weekly Market Commentary | February 13, 2023
Good market forecasts are not just about the economy and earnings—they are about what the market is pricing in. Below we share our thoughts on the potential for a soft landing, the possible role China might play in that, and whether markets are pricing in too much good news.
Brightening Outlook For International Equities | Weekly Market Commentary | February 6, 2023
Investors got more excited about international investing late last year. Some of that was chasing better returns, as developed international equities solidly beat the U.S. over the last three months of 2022.
Will January’s Market Hit the Trifecta? The Seasonal Indicators | Weekly Market Commentary | January 30, 2023
The script has been flipped in 2023. Last year’s underperformers have turned into outperformers this year, driving the S&P 500 Index up over 5% this month.
A Feisty Bull-Bear Debate: Weighing the Pros and Cons | Weekly Market Commentary | January 23, 2023
The latest episode of the debate between stock market bulls and bears has gotten more interesting. For every valid point from one side, there’s an equally compelling argument on the other side.