The Investment Strategies Channel

Weighing the Week Ahead: What is Working, and Will It Persist?

The economic calendar is modest. Volatility is lower even with plenty of news. The summer doldrums have arrived! It provides time for introspection to fill those empty timeslots and pages.

Can Small-Cap Outperformance Continue?

Small caps have materially outperformed large caps in 2018, with the S&P SmallCap 600 Index outpacing the S&P 500 Index 7.80% to 2.58% between Dec. 29, 2017, and May 25, 2018. Below, I highlight the drivers of small-cap returns this year, and why I believe the trend could continue.

The Battle of the Passive Strategies

My first book, The Only Guide to a Winning Investment Strategy You’ll Ever Need, was first published 20 years ago, in May 1998. With its 20th anniversary in mind, let’s see how my recommendations worked out for investors who followed them.

Weighing the Week Ahead: Do Individual Investors Face a Pivotal Decision?

The economic calendar is loaded and there is plenty of non-economic news as well. The punditry will focus on the Trump-Kim summit at the start of the week and then turn to inflation data and the Fed. Who knows what the first might bring, but the market is unlikely to be surprised by the Fed.

The Federal Reserve’s Axis of Symmetry

The Federal Reserve has two primary mandates: maximizing employment and stable prices. Congress also included moderating long-term interest rates as part of the Fed’s overall objective, but that should be the offshoot of stable prices. In May the unemployment rate fell to 3.8% which is the lowest since April 2000.

Market Cap to GDP: An Updated Look at the Buffett Valuation Indicator

With the latest monthly close and the GDP Q1 Second Estimate data and Q1 GNP, we now have an updated look at the popular "Buffett Indicator" -- the ratio of corporate equities to GDP. The current reading is 142.1%, up from 136.4% the previous quarter.

Sector Performance and Economic Cycles: When Do Sectors Have the Potential to Shine?

There are many determinants of stock performance. Corporate earnings, fiscal policy and interest rates can all influence the equity markets. But equity returns are also dependent on where we stand in the economic cycle.

Weighing the Week Ahead: Is it Time to Worry About a Trade War?

The economic calendar is light. Most of the “financial” news flow relates to non-core stories. Of the various geo-political themes, there is one that is most significant for investors.

How Commonwealth’s Investment Research Team Can Make a Difference for You and Your Clients

Institutional-quality research for you and your clients. Guidance on investment management programs, equities, fixed income, and alternatives. A dedicated SRI/ESG resource. Direct access to our chief investment officer. That’s the value-add you get from Commonwealth Financial Network’s Investment Research team.

Moving Averages: May Month-End Update

Valid until the market close on June 29, 2018.

The S&P 500 closed May with a monthly gain of 2.16% after a minor gain of 0.27% in April. All three S&P 500 MAs are signaling "invested" and two of five Ivy Portfolio ETFs — Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF (VTI) and PowerShares DB Commodity Index (DBC) — are signaling "invested".

3M Company: It Didn’t Take a Crystal Ball to See That It Was Overvalued: Part 3

Regular readers of my work will attest to the fact that I am an avid proponent of valuation. So much so, that I cannot recall writing an article where I didn’t discuss the importance of only investing in a stock when it was fairly-valued, or better yet – undervalued.

Passive & Private Market Force, Ecology & Evolution

Central bankers catch a lot of flak these days. However, there are two dominant trends in the market place – increasing allocations towards passive and private market investment strategies – where this ire might be misplaced. What if these developments were merely part of the natural evolution of investment markets?

Asia's Stability Makes It Poised for Growth

Matthews Asia CIO Robert Horrocks says Asia’s political and economic environment looks strong for the region’s long-term growth prospects.

Gundlach Defends Technical Analysis

Criticism of technical analysis ranges from bemused skepticism to claims of harebrained alchemy. Few investors as well-respected as Jeffrey Gundlach admit to using it. But yesterday, he explained why he relies on technical analysis under certain conditions.

A Strategic Income Fund that is Thriving in a Challenging Bond Market

Carl Kaufman is the co-president, co-chief executive officer and managing director, fixed income at Osterweis Capital Management. He is the lead portfolio manager for the Strategic Income Fund. That fund has had an annualized return of 6.18% since its inception on 8/30/02. Its performance exceeded the AGG by 278 basis points. I interviewed Carl last week.