Displaying items by tag: healthcare
There are a handful of safe haven stock sectors that investors tend to rely on during market downturns. Healthcare, utilities, and REITs come to mind. Lately, some have been saying bank shares may also prove a good defense. However, investors should be very wary of two of those just mentioned: healthcare and banks. While on the surface healthcare stocks look very good for a recession—it is not as if people stop getting sick—the reality is that there has never been more regulatory pressure on the sector (from both sides of the aisle), which means it is far from safe. Additionally, the idea that banks have become safe, utility-like dividend machines is flawed, as bank earnings are very exposed to the economic cycle, and thus will likely see big moves in both price and yield.
FINSUM: We agree with this assessment entirely. Healthcare is more vulnerable than it has been in memory and banks are a long way from being dependable utilities (excellent PR job by Wall Street though!).
There are a lot of retirees, or near retirees, who have not had to navigate real market volatility for around a decade. And as any retiree knows, high volatility in or at retirement is a very scary prospect. However, there are ways to navigate it. Some tips including keeping a cash buffer, going bargain hunting in the market to find undervalued stocks, and re-evaluating stock exposure. Rotating into sectors that do well in downturns, like consumer staples, healthcare etc, can also be smart.
FINSUM: This is good advice. That said, the US may not be headed into a really bad economic and market scenario, so it may not be wise to get too defensive.
The first round of the second Democratic debate occurred last night, and it was full of fireworks. Candidates ramped up their attacks on one another, with most of the aggressiveness directed at Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren for their Medicare for All bills that would create an entirely government-run healthcare system. Other candidates criticized the plan as “fairy tale economics”.
FINSUM: We again think that the debate last night showed why Republicans are most likely to win this election—many in the party recognize the need to play more toward the middle to win the race.
It may seem very far out right now, but the 2020 election is looking like it could be a very bad outcome for markets. Democrats are still leading in the polls, which is bad news because pretty much every candidate (perhaps with the exception of Biden) looks like they would be quite bearish for markets. Between higher taxes, more regulations, and government run healthcare, the outlook for markets from most of the leading candidates appears bleak.
FINSUM: When you take even a casual glance at how this election is shaping up, things look rough. You have the most leftist Democratic candidates in memory, and they are leading the polls. We think the polls are off and Trump still has better odds, but there is undoubtedly a very large risk.
The reality of the political environment in the US is making one thing very clear: it is a tentative time to buy or own healthcare stocks. While healthcare companies are currently performing well, the market is growing increasingly bearish about them, and with good reason. Democratic candidates have proposed an array of new national healthcare plans that all have degrees of disruption, some of them massive, to the status quo. That means the healthcare industry is facing a problem that is very hard to control and could cause extensive changes to their current operating paradigm.
FINSUM: Unless healthcare gets so beat up that it is worth taking a risk on the stocks just as a bet that the Democrats don’t win the election, it seems like there is asymmetric risk reward in the sector right now.