“If you look at the market relative to its history…[it’s] trading at about 20 to 25% above its median. It’s a headwind unless we can start to see revenues catch up.”
So says Jack Ablin, Chief Investment Officer at BMO Private Bank.
“The market is thriving on liquidity and the best way to track liquidity is credit spreads,” he says. “Just look at the relative yield between high quality borrowers and low quality borrowers and as long as that’s narrow - and it is right now - that to me suggests that it’s still full steam ahead on the market.”
That’s all well and good but what about the Fed. Last week we saw Janet Yellen dip her toe in the equity pool. Will the actions of the FOMC stall that “full steam ahead” market?
“The tapering is really just a speed bump,” Ablin contends. “I think that the markets digested that, investors have gotten past that. The real issue now is short term rates...it’s gonna be that raising of the short term rate that’s gonna cause a risk revaluation.”
While many market watchers expect that to come sometime next year Ablin thinks Yellen and company will try to push that out as long as possible. In other words, “if [Yellen] can be Hawkish in rhetoric and dovish in action, that will serve her and probably the market well for at least a little while more.”