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Tag Archives: Alhambra Portfolios

Weekly Market Pulse: Are Higher Interest Rates Good For The Economy?

Interest rates surged last week on the back of a hotter-than-expected inflation report that wasn’t actually that bad (see below). Not that my – or your – opinion about these things matters all that much to the market. In the short run, all that matters is what the majority believes is the truth. What they believed last week was that inflation isn’t falling fast enough and the Fed will not be cutting rates anytime soon. That was enough to send the bond market into a...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Monetary Policy Is Hard

So, is that it? Have rates peaked? Is the long bear market finally over?  The market decided last week that interest rates have peaked for this cycle. And if rates have peaked then all the assets that have been pressured over the last two years can finally come up for air. Since October 18, 2021, over two years ago, investors have had few places to hide. Of the major asset classes we follow closely, only two – gold and commodities – were higher by more than a...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Look Up In The Sky! It’s A UFO! Or Not!

As I sit here writing this Sunday afternoon, the US has just shot down a third UFO in the last 3 days in addition to the Chinese “weather” balloon last week. I have no insight into what these things might be but I do wonder if we haven’t declared war on the National Weather Service. The federal government has become so sprawling that it could easily  be the case that NORAD has no idea what the NWS has up in the air. And with all the UFO shooting going on, the NWS...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Happy Days Are Here Again!

Your cares and troubles are gone There’ll be no more from now on! Happy days are here again! The skies above are clear again Let us sing a song of cheer again Happy days are here again! Lyrics: Jack Yellen, Music: Milton Ager That’s certainly how it’s felt since the turn of the new year with the NASDAQ up nearly 15%, European stocks continuing to recover, emerging markets anticipating a Chinese recovery and a solid January for the S&P 500. Bonds have been...

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Weekly Market Pulse: A Fatal Conceit

Inflation* in the US is falling rapidly with the CPI rising just 0.9% in the second half of 2022 versus 5.4% in the first six months. Existing home sales are down 14.6% in the last 3 months and 34% over the last year. Housing starts are down 22% and permits are down 30% year-over-year. Orders for durable goods are down 1.2%, exports are down 3.8%, and imports are down 4.3% over the last 3 months. Real disposable income is up 0.8% in the last six months but was down...

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Weekly Market Pulse: The Consensus Will Be Wrong

What’s your outlook for this year? I’ve heard that question repeatedly over the last month and if you’re reading this hoping I’ll let you have a peak at my crystal ball, you’re going to be disappointed. Because I don’t have a crystal ball and neither, I hasten to add, does anyone else in this business. So, no, I don’t know what’s going to happen this year. I do know what the consensus view is, what the majority expects to happen, and that may be more useful. Because...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Happy Holidays

We received a host of economics reports this past week; some good, others not so much. The week started with the Consumer Price Index report coming in better than expected at an increase of just 0.1% from the previous month (7.1% from a year ago), compared with respective estimates of 0.3% and 7.3%. This is great news (and the market responded in kind), as inflation continues to moderate not only here but also in Europe. US import and export prices were also both...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Currency Illusion

When we think about the challenges facing an investor today, the big problems, the things we worry about that could cause a lot more harm than some interest rate hikes, are mostly outside the United States. China is prominent this weekend because of demonstrations against their zero COVID policies. The Chinese people appear to be pretty well fed up with the endless lockdowns and have finally decided to try and do something about it. Unfortunately, I’m not sure...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Good News, Bad News

One thing I can tell you for certain about last week’s big rally on Thursday and Friday: there were a lot of people who desperately wanted a good excuse to buy stocks. And buy they did after a better-than-expected CPI report Thursday morning, pushing the S&P 500 up nearly 6% on the week with all of that coming on Thursday and Friday. The same could be said of bonds which also had a good week, with the aggregate index up 2.3%. The stock market rally probably says...

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Weekly Market Pulse: Did Powell Just Blink?

Did Jerome Powell blink last Friday? It was just before the market open Friday and interest rates were jumping higher, as they had all week. The 10-year Treasury yield was up to 4.33%, another 11 basis points higher than the previous close and 32 basis points higher than the previous week’s close. Then, “the article” hit the front page of the WSJ: Fed Set to Raise Rates by 0.75 Point and Debate Size of Future Hikes By Nick Timiraos The article led with this quote:...

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