Archive | ETF Philosophy

What The Daily 1% Price Swings Mean For ETF Investors

In the first half of the U.S. stock market bull (i.e., 2009-2011), 10%-19% corrections occurred annually. That has not been the case in the second half of the bull market. Instead, the frequency as well as the duration of setbacks lessened. There were several 7% sell-offs in 2012, a couple of 5% pullbacks in 2013 [...] Continue Reading...


When Canaries Stop Singing, Riskier ETFs Can Croak

In a recent article at WSJ.com, the author interviews Michael Hartnett, a primary investment guru at Merrill Lynch. The top strategist explains that commodities, emerging markets, high-yield bonds and small-cap U.S. stocks are the “four classic canaries” in the investment mines. Moreover, he warns, the archetypal canaries have stopped singing. Yet Hartnett simply views the absence [...] Continue Reading...


Preparing Your ETF Portfolio For Increased Volatility

HSBC’s most recent Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for the Chinese economy rose to 50.5 from a final reading of 50.2 in August. The manufacturing sector may be expanding, but the growth is noticeably restrained. Meanwhile, German factories registered their slowest growth in 15 months and the French manufacturing segment continues to shrink. Equally disconcerting, the [...] Continue Reading...


Reduce Your Allocation To Small Cap U.S. Stock ETFs

The Wall Street media may celebrate the 35% intra-day jump in Alibaba shares. They may tout the record highs in the Dow and the S&P 500. However, they are missing the boat on both the economy as well as key stock market divergences. Let us start with the economic environment. The all-important Conference Board’s Leading Indicators [...] Continue Reading...


What the Federal Reserve’s Policy Guidance Means For ETF Investors

The market supposedly climbs a “Wall of Worry,” at least until those concerns overwhelm participants. Yet the only apprehension that might send stock investors for the exit doors today relates to the timing and the pace of central bank rate hikes. When it comes to a number of the traditional alarms – geopolitical struggles, global [...] Continue Reading...


Bond ETFs: Selling the Rumor, Buying The News

The appetite for stock risk is softening, yet few people are talking about it. Take a look at the “Advance-Decline Line” – one of the more popular technical analysis tools for identifying potential trend reversals. It dropped below a short-term moving average (50 SMA) in early August; it is now below the key trendline in [...] Continue Reading...


Currency Hedged Stock ETFs Can Protect A Diversified Portfolio

The U.S. economy has been growing at an annualized pace of roughly 2% since the current expansion began in June of 2009. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the first half of 2014 hovered around a paltry 1%. And while many contend that 2nd quarter growth at approximately 4% is signaling better times ahead, members of [...] Continue Reading...


How ETF Investors Can Prepare For A 10% Correction

What is the longest period of time that the S&P 500 has traded without a 10% correction? According to Bespoke Investment Group, the record is a blissful 1,127-day run from July 1984 to August 1987. The current rally? 1,069 days. The waters are so calm, in fact, that only 13.3% of respondents to the most [...] Continue Reading...


Choosing Your Domestic and Foreign Stock Allocation

There are times when an important statistic simply does not pack a punch. For instance, the percentage of working-aged individuals employed in the labor force sits at 62.8%. This percentage dwells in a 36-year low cellar. Why is it so troubling? The lack of workers adversely affects middle-class consumption capability – the supposed engine that [...] Continue Reading...


Emerging Market ETFs Are Taking Back The World

More often than not, if you tell me that an asset is roughly 20% above its long-term trendline, I will tell you that the investment is overbought. I might even explain that a pullback to the 200-day moving average is a necessary prerequisite before buying the asset or, at the very least, an 8%-10% sell-off [...] Continue Reading...


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