The Global Markets Channel

S&P 500 Snapshot: Record Highs Continue

On Friday, the S&P opened lower than the previous three days and oscillated around a narrow range until late in the day with a few jumps just before close. The index reached its intraday high at close and ended the day with a gain of 0.15%. Week over week, the index saw a gain of 0.70% ending Friday with another record close.

5 Charts That Show 2017 Could Be a Banner Year for Retailers

Thursday morning, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC that we could expect “significant” tax reform by August, including tax cuts for middle-income Americans and corporations. Like clockwork, the major stock indices rallied to all-time highs in intraday trading.

ECRI Weekly Leading Index: "How Reliable Are GDP Consensus Forecasts?"

Today's release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts its Weekly Leading Index (WLI) at 144.6, up just 0.1 from the previous week. It is currently just below its all-time high. Year-over-year the four-week moving average of the indicator is now at 12.32%, up from 12.17% the previous week, and at an interim high. The WLI Growth indicator is now at 10.5, down slightly from the previous week.

Southeastern Asset Management: “We welcome unpredictability”

Ross Glotzbach is head of research and a principal at Southeastern Asset Management, one of the most respected value managers. In this interview, he discusses his investment outlook in an era of political and economic uncertainty.

Gold Gets a Shot in the Arm from Inflation and China

Inflation just got another jolt, rising as much as 2.5 percent year-over-year in January, the highest such rate since March 2012. Led by higher gasoline, rent and health care costs, consumer prices have now advanced for the sixth straight month. In addition, January is the second straight month for rates to be above the Federal Reserve’s target of 2 percent.

Tax Reform: The Good, the Bad, and the Really Ugly—Part Three

Today we come to part 3 of my tax reform series. So far, we’ve introduced the challenge and begun to describe the main proposed GOP solution. Today we’ll look at the new and widely misunderstood “border adjustment” idea and talk about both its good and bad points

Forecasting Factor and Smart Beta Returns (Hint: History Is Worse than Useless)

In a series of articles we published in 2016, we show that relative valuations predict subsequent returns for both factors and smart beta strategies in exactly the same way price matters in stock selection and asset allocation.

Trade Secret: Emerging Markets Constrained by US Policy Uncertainty

Uncertainty about US trade policy changes that could potentially harm emerging market economies dragged them down 4% during the fourth quarter of 2016, underperforming developed markets by 2%.1 Yet emerging market economies generally showed positive signs, with exports beginning to recover, commodity prices rebounding, and inflation remaining benign.

Sales and Earnings Back At Highs, But So Are Valuations

In the past year, S&P profits have grown 46% yoy. Sales are 4.5% higher. By some measures, profit margins are back at their prior highs. This is a remarkable turnaround from a year ago, when profits had declined by 15% and most investors interpreted this as a sure sign that a recession and a new bear market were underway.

Nuclear Blackmail

In this report, we define nuclear blackmail and differentiate it from blackmail in a nuclear context. We discuss why this didn’t develop during the Cold War but why it could happen now. We also analyze how nuclear blackmail might be used as part of coercive diplomacy as well as part of conventional conflict.

Investors Brace for a Storm of Uncertainty with Gold

Back in November, I wrote that domestic carriers are likely to see the new president—himself the former owner of the now-defunct Trump Airlines—as a strong partner in several key areas. Although a couple of airline CEOs have recently expressed strong opposition to some of Trump’s protectionist immigration policies, yesterday’s meeting appeared to be constructive, with the president telling the group he would soon be announcing something “phenomenal in terms of tax and developing our aviation infrastructure.”

Art, Entertainment and Leisure in Asia

Happy Chinese New Year to all my friends and followers! There’s no question it’s a big holiday for leisure and entertainment. Last year, retail and dining expenditures for the Lunar New Year came in at 754 billion yuan ($US115 billion), according to China’s Ministry of Commerce.

National Defense: Is Another Spending Boom on the Horizon?

If President Trump’s promise to increase defense spending comes to fruition, it would sharply reverse the trend of the past five years—and have important implications for the outlook on US growth and inflation.

Is Trump’s ‘Red Meat’ the Right Long-Term Diet?

Within hours of assuming office, Donald Trump began issuing executive orders and policy proposals to fulfill his campaign promises. Neil Dwane, Global Strategist for Allianz Global Investors, asks if Trump really wants to “make America great again”, is he addressing the long-term structural problems that sorely need fixing?

The Test...

Market psychology was tested last week. Early in the week, the nightly news flow out of Washington D.C. was so concerning, that it felt as if the markets could have easily opened limit down the next morning.