Category

Large Cap ETFs

Amazon (AMZN): Love the Company, Hate The Stock Price

By | Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Large Cap ETFs, Popular Posts, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | One Comment

I recently ate dinner with a high-net-worth sales executive who asked me, “What are your thoughts on Amazon?” I told him the truth. Excellent company… unusually vulnerable stock. I explained my thesis on debt levels, excessive financial leverage, bubbly market euphoria, over-valuation as well as forced liquidation via margin calls. He seemed surprised that I might be concerned. He stated confidently, “Jeff Bezos is a one-of-a-kind innovator and Amazon is the future of retail. The stock should do very well…

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Extreme Leverage? Extreme Valuations? Big Time Short Sellers Must Be Thinking About It

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

There is an eight foot broadleaf evergreen directly outside my office door. Normally, I would not give it a second’s glance. Recently, however, a hummingbird has been buzzing about the greenery. And with good reason. Two hatchlings have arrived, requiring food as well as warmth. In spite of my presence, the mother has been expressing an unusual amount of audacity. She does not flinch when I walk near the nest. And when she’s out gathering insects to feed her young, she…

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Bull? Bear? The U.S. Stock Market Is More Like The Honey Badger

By | Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Large Cap ETFs, Popular Posts, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Voters in the United Kingdom shockingly decided to leave the European Union? The stock market barely blinked. Voters in the United States unexpectedly elected a brash promoter over a well-established political insider? The stock market didn’t care. It told the media elite to take a hike, then promptly climbed to higher ground. The S&P 500 really doesn’t care what you think. It takes what it wants when it wants. The Federal Reserve continues to raise overnight lending rates? The yield…

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Did Stock Guru Jim Cramer Learn Anything From 2000 And 2008?

By | Consumer ETFs, Current Affairs and ETFs, ETF Philosophy, ETF Strategy, Large Cap ETFs, Popular Posts, Special Sectors ETFs, US Markets and ETFs | No Comments

Borrowing money to get something that a person wants today can be financially rewarding. For example, mortgage debt helps a borrower acquire a home that is likely to appreciate in value over time. Not only does one enjoy the use of the property, one often increases his/her net worth through the use of leverage. A problem might develop, however, if an individual or family struggles to make the monthly payment. Job loss, sickness, ill-advised spending habits – a lendee might…

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Rationalizing Stock Market Irrationality (Or, The Earth Might Be Flat)

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

The repeal-n-replace health care bill needs a “Yes” vote from the House of Representatives on Thursday, March 23rd. With it, the financial markets may move higher on the belief that Trump/Congress will be able to pass corporate-friendly legislation from tax overhaul to regulatory reform. Without it, risk assets may stumble on the fear that political leaders will be unable to provide ambitious stimulus measures down the road. The prospect of lower taxes has always been at the heart of the…

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The Fed and Cheap Money: Are We Closing In On A Swan Song?

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

Corporations have more than doubled their debt levels since 2008’s financial crisis, from $3.5 trillion to $8.1 trillion. They are carrying more leverage (e.g., debt-to-revenue, debt-to-EBITDA, etc.) than at any point since the 2000-2002 tech wreck. And the cash relative to the debt on corporate books has been dropping precipitously. Granted, one can choose to emphasize the inexpensive nature of the credit. Why shouldn’t companies borrow by the boatload as long as interest rates remain relatively contained? For one thing,…

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What If This Is As Good As It Gets?

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

There are a handful of movies that suck me in whenever they come around. Goodfellas. The Godfather. The Shawshank Redemption. Still, there’s only one production where I can never get enough of the main character’s outlandishness. Melvin Udall in As Good As It Gets. He hoards bars of soap as part of an obsessive-compulsive disorder. He sneeringly berates a woman for admiring his work as an author. He even shoves the neighbor’s dog down a laundry chute. I watched the Jack…

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Bull Market’s Health Depends More On Congress Than Trump

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

In a bull market, many investors come to believe that risk is synonymous with reward. “You’ve got to be in it to win it” or “If you don’t take chances, your wallet will forever remain empty.” In a bear market, the truth about risk is revealed. Specifically, steep financial losses are neither rewarding nor easily recovered. The average descent? 30%. And the average time to recover? Approximately three-and-one-quarter years. So, if an average bearish downtrend occurred right now, the S&P…

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Have We Reached The Emotional Stage Of Euphoria For Stocks?

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

In what world can aggregate debt of a country/business/household grow faster than its economy/income indefinitely? A world where math and logic no longer exist. Consider the circumstances for the United States. Economic growth as measured by the pace of gross domestic product (GDP) used to move in lockstep with the expansion of the country’s debt. However, in 1971, the growth rates began decoupling in earnest. That was the year President Nixon terminated gold’s relationship with the U.S. dollar. Not surprisingly, once…

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Markets Priced For Perfection Rarely Get What They ‘Price In’

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

It is almost inconceivable. Just 10 years ago, you could purchase a 3-year Treasury and sock away a risk free rate of return of nearly 6%. Right now? A paltry 1.5%. It follows that, today, one must take enormous chances to generate an income stream up and above the pace of inflation. And that’s only if you believe inflation gauges placing the annual rate in the neighborhood of 2%. For example, let’s assume an individual purchases a 5-year Treasury for…

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