In my four earlier ones, I covered why December was lousy and why stocks are on the right side of a swift V-shaped recovery. U.S. stocks have climbed more than 10 percent since the market close on Christmas Eve. Assuming December 24 remains the bottom, this correction ended later in a calendar year than any correction or bear market ever.
First, for those who think of me as one of those perma-bears, I am nothing of the sort. I can't wait to invest in the next U.S. stock bull market. But first, we must muddle through a period of negative, or at best weak positive returns. So, in that sense, I guess I am a realist. And there is something going on right now regarding the very popular approach of investors looking at trailing returns on their investments. If the current cycle is like many that preceded it, there will be confusion, frustration and ultimately some very bad moves made by investors attempting to get a “quick-fix” in their portfolio. This first one shows that the S&P 500 Index has been about flat since the start of November 2017. That is over 14 months during which perhaps the most popular investment in many portfolios has produced about zero return. That is par for the course with long-term investing, and it also reinforces the impact that bear market cycles have on long-term returns for those who just sit there and take it. That's why I am such a fan of tactical investing. You don't have to sit there and take it. You can defend and potentially even exploit down markets in stocks, bonds or both.
The government's response with targeted stimulus measures is being tested by the standoff with U.S. President Donald Trump over trade at a time when the global expansion is already looking shakier. “Growth will improve from the second quarter onwards,” said Morgan Stanley's Chief China Economist Robin Xing in an interview with Bloomberg Television in Hong Kong. Shares in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Sydney climbed after the S&P 500 Index hit its highest since early December on Friday.
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This weekend's Barron's cover story features the top picks from the 2019 Barron's Roundtable. Other featured articles offer bargain gold mining stocks and how to play the life sciences boom. Also, the prospects for office REITs, a retail stock on sale and a battleground stock.
SZ DJI Technology Co., which discovered the corruption in an internal probe, said it's fired multiple workers who inflated parts costs for personal gain, and contacted law enforcement. DJI, which employs 14,000 people around the globe, is the runaway leader in consumer drones with almost three-quarters of the market. The case exposes a lapse in internal controls at one of the country's best-known consumer technology giants, a symbol of the rising global reach of a clutch of fast-growing corporations based in the southern metropolis of Shenzhen.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration has published its first detailed monthly oil forecast for 2020 and it shows something that should strike fear into the hearts of OPEC ministers — from the fourth quarter, America will export more oil than it imports. This won't make the U.S. independent of the global supply chain. It doesn't mean that it will stop shipping in crude from the Middle East and Latin America, or bringing refined products from Europe and Asia.
It took the worst corporate scandal in automotive history for Volkswagen to make the necessary decision to transform itself into an electric car company. The world's largest car maker will spend $50 billion over the next five years to develop 50 new electric models, an increase from six today, and produce 1 million electric cars by 2025. This radical reinvention is exactly what is needed to stave off a challenge from Tesla (TSLA) and a band of upstarts from California and China that are building for an electric future.
In one of the tightest labor markets in decades, employee happiness may be more important than ever for companies to retain good workers. Unemployment, which has remained at a nearly 50-year low for the past few months, climbed slightly in December to 3.9 percent. However, the rise in the unemployment rate likely stemmed from a jump in the labor force participation rate -- not a shortage in new jobs -- because at 63.1 percent, it's at the highest level in more than a year, tied for the highest rate since 2013.
But one thing he said really rattled Reddit's “FIRE” board, where half a million subscribers gather to share their thoughts on the “financial independence, retire early” strategy that's become a hot-button topic for millennials. Here's what set them off: 'Suze Orman was criticized as being elitist and out-of-touch for suggesting that you might need $5 million to $10 million to retire at 35. But she's not wrong under her framework, which is that in retirement, you want to live well, not poorly.
Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc has signed an agreement to allow extraction of lithium from its geothermal wells in California, a project that could offer U.S. carmakers and battery producers a secure supply of the metal, the Financial Times reported on Sunday. The venture has been in talks to supply Tesla Inc with lithium, a component for batteries to power electric cars, the newspaper reported, citing people familiar with the company. Berkshire Hathaway's geothermal wells could produce up to 90,000 tonnes of lithium a year worth $1.5 billion at current prices, the report said, citing a fundraising document.
Then we talked about community festivals where she could show her work and sell it. Most of the festivals required an entrance fee, so she did a lot of research and entered a couple, to try it out. She sold several paintings and even got a couple of custom orders.
Vanguard founder Jack Bogle, who died this week at the age of 89, has been rightly celebrated as one of the most important innovators in the history of capitalism, upending Wall Street retail brokerage and the mutual fund industry. Bogle's winning bet that the average market return would beat most active managers includes an important, if counter-intuitive lesson about success: the path to it does not always mean you have to spend more, or stretch. If Vanguard Group founder Jack Bogle, who died this week at the age of 89, represented the pinnacle of American success, his success is one that includes a counter-intuitive lesson.
Benzinga has featured looks at many investor favorite stocks over the past week. Bullish calls included a top automaker and a leading airline. Bearish calls included a troubled utility and a video game giant.
ConEd's dividend growth history places it on the exclusive list of Dividend Aristocrats, a group of stocks in the S&P 500 Index with 25+ consecutive years of dividend increases. ConEd offers a safe dividend and will continue to pay its dividend even during a recession. Given the recent volatility in the stock markets, ConEd's rock-solid dividend becomes that much more valuable for income investors.
Shares in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Sydney climbed after the S&P 500 Index hit its highest since early December on Friday. Spurring the gains was optimism around the next round of U.S.-China trade talks at month-end and data from China that alleviated concerns of a continued deterioration in China's slowing economy. Not all was sunny on Monday, however, with S&P 500 futures dipping and the yen strengthening after Bloomberg reported that the two sides are making little progress on the key issue of intellectual property protection.
Shares in Asia rose Monday, extending gains on Wall Street last week. Buying enthusiasm has been spurred by renewed hopes for progress on resolving the trade standoff between the U.S. and China. Shares rose in Shanghai and Hong Kong Monday despite news that China's economy grew at its lowest pace in three decades last year.
Tesla Inc. was cleared to begin delivering its Model 3 sedans across Europe, according to Dutch vehicle authority RDW. Deliveries should start in February and, as happened in the U.S., the first sales in Europe will be for the Model 3 Long Range Battery variant, according to Tesla.
I know I keep talking about this, but it's important. If stocks had followed at least a similar path to the ones the last seven bubbles travelled, it would be clear by now if this correction was a crash or just the pause (albeit it a painful one, with markets down about 20% across the board) that refreshes. As I've told you for the last several weeks, there are several possible scenarios that could unfold.
There is no respite for Libya on its bumpy road to recover crude oil production to the levels of 2011, when the toppling of Muammar Gaddafi plunged the country into a deep division between the east and west and an incessant strife for control over its vital oil industry. A military operation launched this week could shape the fate of Libya's oil production and exports for months and possibly years to come. Barely a day had passed since the African OPEC member won exemption from the new OPEC+ production cuts in early December, when its largest oil field, Sharara, was shut down, after armed militia claiming attachment to the local Petroleum Facilities Guard (PFG) seized control and demanded ransom to re-open it.
The downturn is squeezing urban workers and entrepreneurs the ruling Communist Party is counting on to help transform China from a low-wage factory into a prosperous consumer market. Headline economic numbers still look healthy. Growth in 2019 is forecast at more than 6 percent, down only slightly from about 6.5 percent last year.
One of the main points I make in my book, "Invest Like a Shark", is that you don't beat mutual funds by investing and trading like a mutual fund. There is no way you can compete effectively against a fund by doing the same thing they do. The funds have much better research, more capital and better access to information.
Some level of DUCs is normal, but the ballooning number of uncompleted wells has repeatedly fueled speculation that a sudden rush of new supply might come if companies shift those wells into production. The latest crash in oil prices once again raises this prospect. On the one hand, lower oil prices – despite the recent rebound, prices are still down sharply from a few months ago – can cause some E&Ps to want to hold off on drilling new wells.
J. Bradford Delong wrote a very interesting article discussing the trigger for the next recession. While I agree with Bradford's point, I think there is a disconnect between the crises he points out and repeated behaviors which lead to those events. Click here to read more on Iris.