& Strategic Views
The second quarter of 2011 had an all too familiar feel. After a strong start to the year, investors “sold in May and went away.” However, this time rather than an oil spill and the ensuing disaster, it was global supply chain issues caused by the Japanese tsunami, massive flooding in the US, a slowing growth rate in China and continued European debt concerns that caused investors to pull back. Added to that backdrop was [...]
“He that can have patience can have what he will.”
The first quarter of 2011 closed with an upward trend in stock prices. A rally that began in December continued through March with the final day of trading in the quarter testing the highs set on February 5th. This type of behavior shows the extreme resilience of investors; that despite the prevalence of intense “noise,” the fundamentals that drive investing currently rule the Street.
“Everyone takes the limits of his own vision for the limits of the world.”
Last quarter we discussed our take on the future of the economy, noting that economics is a dismal science and thus we are required to take a less apocalyptic and more measured approach to our forecasts than the soothsayers in the media. We noted that economic forecasts over the last 12 months have been anything but consistent or accurate and that [...]
“The mind is its own place, and in itself, can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.” John Milton
A recent story we read captures the idea of how many people think in linear ways that can lead us to underestimate the future – be careful how you think:
“In 1898, the first international urban-planning conference convened in New York. It was abandoned after three days because none of the delegates could [...]
The second quarter marked a pause in the 18 month rally in the equity markets. International markets performed substantially worse than domestic ones, particularly when translated into U.S. Dollar terms. Much of this correction stemmed from the uncertainties in Europe and lackluster domestic indicators of economic activity.
The last three months have brought market participants to a point where many feel we are evenly balanced between economic decline and growth. That viewpoint is reflected in [...]
by H. Brian May
Last week we experienced a selloff reminiscent of the days of Lehman Brothers’ failure in 2008. While some claim a trading error may have been responsible for a portion of the massive decline on Thursday, we know that fears of a European collapse and Greek contagion gave speculators and traders a reason to sell.
It’s clear the markets have risen substantially from the March 2009 lows, but [...]
During the last month, we passed the one year anniversary of the stock market’s most recent crisis low. We remember quite clearly that ugly Monday in March (3/9/09), 3 days after the S&P 500 hit an intraday low of 666, then closed at 676.53, reflecting a point where in the wake of the credit crisis, panic selling appeared to capitulate. At that point the S&P 500 traded at the same level it first crossed in 1996, 13 years earlier.