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Stormy Investment Seas

This month the investment markets have been very volatile. This volatility has been caused by the following reasons: Interest Rates. New Fed Chairmen Jerome Powell has reaffirmed the Fed’s plan to increase interest rates gradually in recent speeches. Maintaining a gradual pace of hikes is a key to future gains in the equity markets. Wage increases for this cycle have been moderate on a historical basis, and Mr. Powell believes current conditions are unique when it comes to inflation. Tariff Talk. Investors fear that Trump’s showdown on trade with China and other nations could derail the resurgent US economy by denting business confidence. Bank of America warned in a report on Friday th

What to make of the up and down up and down...

The S&P 500 seems to have stalled out, with the market just trading up and down in a range since February. The markets haven’t seemed to recognize the many strong quarterly reports from company’s far and wide showing rising revenues and profits. But concerns that this might be as good as it gets are weighing on investors. This isn’t a reason to give up, but rather to focus on the specific parts of the market that are continuing to push onward and upward. Overall, there is more in the general market to like than there is to fear. First, the price-to-book basis, most stocks in the S&P 500 are still well below the averages seen in the 1990s and 2000s. This points to one question, is the econo

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