Eq: Total Market

Goldman Sachs put out its views on the market’s volatility and how to handle it. The bank is not bullish on markets but thinks there are some very good stocks to help weather the storm. Unsurprisingly, Goldman says investors should buy stable stocks to help get through the turbulence, as such hum-drum stocks look like they have room to run. "Stable stocks also trade with undemanding valuations, supporting the likelihood that they will outperform if the macro environment grows increasingly challenging. Stocks with stable share prices and stable earnings growth generally trade with a valuation premium relative to more volatile peers and to the typical S&P 500 stock. However, relative valuations today are much lower than they have generally been during the last few years."


FINSUM: This is essentially a low-vol, value play, and that makes perfect sense right now. Very stable companies are likely to get through the economic upheaval better than their peers, so on a relative basis they should outperform.

Goldman Sachs released their latest economic forecast and predict the U.S. will grow at its second-highest rate in over 15 years. The 3.1% prediction would only be outpaced by the K-shaped recovery in 2021. Moreover, they said there is a lower risk of a recession in the next year than the rest of Wall Street with about a 15% chance. Attributing much of the inflation to supply chain issues, Goldman seems to be leaning on the latest core PCE inflation numbers that the Fed cares most about which were on the decline. The biggest ongoing risks to the world economy are China and the continuing Russia-Ukraine war.


Finsum: Goldman believes the Fed can thread the needle and hit the soft landing that many say is impossible, time will tell if they can.

MSCI Inc. has come out firing against the hedge funds' strategy in dealing with ESG. Many prominent hedge funds, like AQR, have not only invested in ESG but are shorting poor ESG scoring companies in an attempt to raise the cost of capital. MSCI VP of ESG, Rumi Mahmood, says this is not an effective ESG strategy because it decreases transparency and doesn’t align corporate and investor interests. On top of that, he believes shorting poor ESG metrics won’t affect the cost of capital for these companies. MSCI finds that engagement over time is the alternative and better pathway to influence a company's behavior.


Finsum:  There is not enough evidence out there as to the effect of short selling on capital formation, however, companies shorting traditional energy have taken a bath. 

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