Commentaries

Timely market commentaries from leading investment firms

German Elections: Not So Steady As She Goes

Broad-based support for Europe among Germany’s key political parties vying for seats in the Bundestag’s 19th legislative period meant Sunday’s election was unlikely to be disruptive for financial markets. And the muted reaction in financial markets Monday morning confirmed this was the case.

Are Risks to Global Economic Growth Still Skewed to the Upside?

In the second quarter, the global economy produced its best showing in six years, based on our estimates. Has strong growth continued in the third quarter? Survey data suggest the answer is yes.

What’s Next For Europe as Merkel Is Re-elected

Angela Merkel’s re-election as German Chancellor was very much expected, but the implications of her victory are harder to predict. Here three of our portfolio managers with a particular interest in Europe share their views on what Merkel’s victory could mean for the region.

Protectionism: Is Anyone Playing a Fair International Game?

The revolving door at the White House continued its rapid rotation during August. The Trump inner circle is now almost unrecognizable from the team surrounding him in January. If the White House was in the private sector the shareholders would be calling for the scalp of the CEO – and probably well before now. Soon everyone will be required to wear name tags. It is beyond fiction.

A Multi-Player Game-Theoretic Approach to Modeling the Global Capital Markets

The purpose of this paper is to share the underlying principles and logic supporting a multi-player game-theoretic approach within a System Dynamics framework, which is employed to construct globally diversified portfolio strategies on behalf of clients.

Weighing the Week Ahead: Time for Tax Reform?

With the FOMC decision behind us and a moderate data calendar, the financial world will be focused on Washington. Expect people to be asking: Has the time come for tax reform?

Low Inflation Is No "Mystery"

Last week, at her press conference, Federal Reserve Chair, Janet Yellen said continued low inflation was a "mystery."

The Fear Factor in Today’s Interest Rates

Atlantic-hugging policymakers and pundits, buffered by a continent and a large ocean, may not fully appreciate the significant effect on global financial markets that the threat posed by North Korea has had in recent months. But competition for safe assets has clearly heated up.

Hurricanes Irma and Harvey: The Impact on the Municipal Markets in Florida and Texas

Baird’s Duane McAllister outlines the impact of hurricanes on the muni markets in Florida and Texas, noting the benefit of the strong fiscal position of both states.

Bubble Mindset

So the mindset, I think, goes something like this. Yes, market valuations are elevated, but, you know, low interest rates justify higher valuations. Besides, there’s really no alternative to stocks because you’ll get what, 1% annually in cash? Look at how the market has done in recent years. There’s no comparison.

Could Driverless Cars Benefit Your Portfolio down the Road?

Science fiction is real. In October of last year, a self-driving semi in Colorado carried over 2,000 cases of beer from Fort Collins to a distribution center in Colorado Springs — a journey of over 130 miles. While there was a professional driver on board, he monitored the trip from the sleeping berth for most of the journey and never took the controls.

4 Reasons Why the Consumer (and the Economy) Are Still in Limbo

Consumer spending helps fuel the economy, but, as Russ explains, still sluggish spending continues to limit growth.

Dalbar 2017: Investors Suck At Investing & Tips For Advisors

Several years ago, I began writing an annual update discussing Dalbar’s Quantitative Analysis Of Investor Behavior study. The study showed just how poorly investors perform relative to market benchmarks over time and the reasons for that underperformance.

Weekly Market Summary

The major US indices all traded at new all-time highs (ATH) this week. Even the lagging small caps index closed at a new ATH on Friday, and transports are very near a new ATH. Persistent strength like that seen throughout 2017 has almost always continued into year-end. However, like last week, a few studies suggest short-term upside will likely be limited. The third quarter ends on Friday.

On My Radar: The Flow That Conquers All

Bottom line: Those foreign central bank purchases translate to a vast sea of liquidity supporting stocks. Hartnett calls it the “supernova of liquidity” and “the flow that conquers all.” My motivation and title for today’s piece.