Category

Commodity ETFs

No Bull. Economic Weakness Continues To Pressure Corporate Profitability

By | Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Consumer ETFs, Currency ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Large Cap ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Is the U.S. economy really in great shape? The U.S. Federal Reserve does not seem to think so. They started the year with an intention of raising the overnight lending rate four times – from 0.25% to 1.25%. In March, they announced that it would more likely be a mere two. And today, the Atlanta Fed downgraded its Q1 estimate for gross domestic product (GDP) to a new low for the year (0.4%). Granted, GDP for the fourth quarter of…

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No Sales, No Profits, No Bull: What Happens When Valuations And Central Banks Collide

By | Asia ETFs, Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Consumer ETFs, Currency ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, Emerging Market ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Europe ETFs, International ETFs, Large Cap ETFs, Latin America ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Total business sales – sales by wholesalers, manufacturers and retailers – have fallen 5% from their July 2014 peak of $1.365 trillion. At $1.296 trillion for January 2016, total business sales have dropped back to where they were in January of 2013 ($1.293 trillion). In fact, the erosion of total sales by American businesses are even uglier when one takes inflation into account. Over the last 20 years, whenever total business sales continued on an upward trajectory, the U.S. economy steered clear…

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Are Stocks Cheap Now? Get GAAP If You Want To Get Real

By | Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Currency ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, Energy ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Large Cap ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

The times they are a changin’. In the ’80s as well as the ’90s, corporations reported quarterly results that corresponded to generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). These days, the vast majority of companies report “pro-forma” earnings that adjust for unusual, special or one-time circumstances. Take a look at the dramatic rise in the percentage of companies serving up adjusted profits per share rather than GAAP-based results. In June of 2010, 70% provided adjusted earnings. However, as the pressure to engineer…

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5 Huge Misunderstandings About The Current Investing Environment

By | Biotechnology ETFs, Commodity ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Health ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Over the weekend, the Denver Broncos beat the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship. Popular football analysts had – across the board, it seemed – believed the Patriots were a “shoe-in.” They were wrong. Peyton Manning could still throw deep passes to score touchdowns. And Denver’s defense rattled Tom Brady on nearly every Patriot possession. In a similar vein, an overwhelming majority of analysts believed that the ending of QE3 in December of 2014 and the 0.25% rate hike in…

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ETF Relationships That May Tell You When The Worst Is Over

By | Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Natural Resources ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Businesses, consumers and the federal government have taken on enormous amounts of debt since the Great Recession. Optimists argue that total debt is irrelevant; that is, they believe the only thing that matters is the cost of servicing those debts. Fair enough. Then what happens when interest expense does rise? Assuming total debt remains the same, higher rates would increase the percentage of household income or the percentage of corporate/government revenue that must be allocated to debt servicing. In earlier…

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Why Good News And Bad News Are Not Helping Stocks Anymore

By | Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Currency ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Short ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Since the Great Recession’s inception, whenever the stock market dropped like a steel anvil or the U.S. economy showed signs of weakness, the Federal Reserve acted to inspire investor confidence. For example, in November of 2008, when the Fed announced its first quantitative easing (QE1) program to buy mortgage-backed securities (MBS), stocks rocketed 10% in two weeks. The enthusiasm wore off quickly. In March of 2009, the central bank of the United States “doubled down” on the MBS dollar amount…

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1704 on the S&P 500 in 2016? Less Far-Fetched Than Investors Want To Believe

By | Asia ETFs, Bond ETFs, China ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Consumer ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, Emerging Market ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Europe ETFs, International ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

How does a favorable bullish uptrend become an unfavorable bearish downtrend? Does the transition happen overnight? Do commentators, analysts, money managers and market participants simultaneously concur that the environment for risk-taking is exceptionally poor? The transition from “good times” to “bad times” is far more gradual than many realize. Granted, prices on the Dow or the S&P 500 may fall apart in a matter of days, changing the narrative from “no reason to worry” to “don’t panic.” That said, there…

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Profit Shortage + Economic Weakness + Stimulus Removal = Less Risk Taking

By | Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, International ETFs, Large Cap ETFs, Small Cap ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, Technology ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Healthy bull market uptrends tend to feature similar risk-taking characteristics. Specifically, market-based participants will invest in a wide range of stock sectors (e.g., industrials, telecom, health care, energy, etc.) and asset types (e.g., large, small, foreign, preferreds, REITs, high yield corporate, convertibles, cross-over corporate bonds, etc.). There is little reason to discriminate because across-the-board risk leads to impressive returns. Late-stage bull markets are different. Fewer and fewer individual stocks succeed; fewer and fewer asset types gain ground. There is more…

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Do Historical Comparisons Matter? Strong Similarities Between 1937 And 2015

By | Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Global ETFs, International ETFs, Large Cap ETFs, Mid Cap ETFs, Small Cap ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

The case for the continuation of the U.S. bull market heavily rests on the shoulders of steady economic growth and low interest rates (on an absolute basis). Many believe that, as long as these circumstances exist, stocks will provide venerable results. However, market participants might want to consider a similar period in history – a time span when the 10-year treasury offered paltry yields, gross domestic product (GDP) grew at a reasonable clip and the Federal Reserve tightened monetary policy….

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Risk Asset Update: Vast Majority Agonize Since The S&P 500’s August Lows

By | Actively Managed ETFs, Asia ETFs, Bond ETFs, Commodity ETFs, Consumer ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, Dividend ETFs, Emerging Market ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Europe ETFs, Global ETFs, International ETFs, Large Cap ETFs, Natural Resources ETFs, Retail ETFs, Small Cap ETFs, Special Sectors ETFs, Transportation ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Weren’t lower oil prices supposed to act like a “tax cut” for U.S. households? If families spend less at the gas pump, then they will spend more of their dollars at the mall. At least that’s what mainstream media cheerleaders like CNBC’s Jim Cramer have insisted throughout the year. In contrast, the S&P SPDR Retail Index (XRT) demonstrates that investors are not particularly impressed by the prospects of American retailers. The current price for the exchange-traded fund tracker is lower…

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