Archive | Retail ETFs

Damage Control: Is It Too Late Too Become More Defensive?

A manufacturing recession doesn’t matter… until it does. Consider industrial production. For the third straight month, industrial production, which includes mining, utilities, as well as manufacturing, contracted. How anemic is American industry right now? The year-over-year percentage change provides a helpful snapshot of the weakness. Not surprisingly, media mega-stars routinely dismiss manufacturers, miners and utility [...] Continue Reading...


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

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 [...] Continue Reading...


Why Stocks Are Getting Riskier By The Day

The central bank of the United States (a.k.a. the Federal Reserve) may hike its overnight lending rate in December. Committee members are also discussing plans to phase out the reinvestment of principal on balance sheet securities. Translation? Borrowing costs are set to move higher. The Fed is tightening for the first time in nearly a [...] Continue Reading...


Asset Class Update: Is Diversification Still A Free Lunch?

According to Barry Ritholtz of Ritholtz Wealth Management, a frequent contributor to CNBC as well as Bloomberg, “the beauty of diversification is that it’s about as close as you can get to a free lunch in investing.” Since 2011, however, investors who diversified in stocks outside of the U.S. and who diversified across other asset [...] Continue Reading...


Why The U.S. Stock Market Never Completely Recovered

Some things go unnoticed. For example, the S&P 500 rallied 13% off its closing lows (1867) set in late August. Lost in the shuffle? The popular benchmark has yet to revisit its closing highs (2130) registered back in May. In essence, the corrective activity that began in the springtime as a function of a faltering [...] Continue Reading...


All About Nothing: Stock ETFs Celebrate Zero Percent Rate Policy

About a year ago, I was meeting a client at a restaurant in Marina Del Rey, California. The traffic had been mild by Los Angeles County standards, so I arrived in the area early. I stopped in a local coffee shop and sat down in a booth. Lo and behold, in the booth next to [...] Continue Reading...


Remember July 2011? The Stock Market’s Advance-Decline (A/D) Line Remembers

According to Bloomberg data, the modest year-to-date increase in the S&P 500 is attributable to health care and retail alone. Worse yet, the two industry segments trade at a 20% premium to the market at large. Paying a premium for growth is one thing. Chasing a handful of momentum stocks is another. Brokerage firm Jones Trading [...] Continue Reading...


When Market Breadth Stinks, Cash Is The Mouthwash

Perma-bulls on the major networks routinely gloss over the reduction in stock market breadth. For example, 60% of the Dow 30 components currently sit below long-term moving averages. When companies like Coca-Cola, Wal-Mart, DuPont, Intel and Verizon are simultaneously suffering from rally fatigue, one might anticipate an eventual breakdown in the gravity-defying direction of popular [...] Continue Reading...


Bull Market, Bear Market or Barely Moving Market?

Perma-bulls may note that the S&P 500 eked out a 0.4% gain in the first quarter of 2015. They may also choose to ignore warning signs such as the 5th consecutive month of decelerating economic activity in the manufacturing segment. The last time that this happened? 2008. A quick check of the individual sectors that [...] Continue Reading...


Why Overvalued Stock ETFs Still Offer Opportunity

Let us recall that every significant economist and every major U.S. investment firm predicted interest rates would climb in 2014. The primary basis for the assessment? U.S. economic growth would accelerate and encourage the Federal Reserve to end ultra-easy monetary measures. Well, now that we’ve seen a so-called acceleration in the second quarter – now [...] Continue Reading...


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