Displaying items by tag: inflation
The bond market seems to have lost all touch with reality. Yields are extremely low, and given the more relaxed inflation reading this month, seem likely to stay pinned. Now consider this: European corporate debt real yields just turned negative. Yes, you are paying for the privilege of holding corporate debt. The ICE BofA index of European high-yield bonds is now at 2.34%, well below inflation.
FINSUM: Is there were ever a sign of a peak, this is it. Bond yields have nowhere to go but up, as there is no defensible logic that they could sustainably move lower. Unfortunately, it seems as though bonds and equity could move hand in hand, as the catalyst for big losses would be the Fed, which would trigger both asset classes.
Whether investors—or Jerome Powell—like it or not, inflation is rising, and is as high as it has been in a generation. Sure, it could prove temporary, but in the near and medium term, investors are worried about it, which means it will be dictating returns. How to hedge inflation is a question that investors haven’t had to worry about in some time, so it is worth noting that REITs have traditionally performed very well in inflationary periods. Since many leases are tied to inflation, rents tend to rise directly in line with inflation, providing an excellent hedge.
FINSUM: REITs are not as well appreciated as an inflation hedge as some others asset classes, but that is exactly why they might be a great buy right now.
The market took a nosedive in the middle of the day today as investors were walloped with a hot CPI inflation reading. The CPI rose an eye-popping 5.4% in June, with core inflation coming in at 4.5%. The market was anticipating a flat 5.0% CPI number. Indexes turned downward immediately following the report. It should be noted than June 2020 was the nadir of the pandemic inflation readings, so that makes this report look even bigger.
FINSUM: The inflation boogeyman returns. Beware a big sell-off across the board in bonds, especially if the Fed or a member of the Fed makes any tightening comments.
Everyone jumped off the three-month gold rally last week after regional Fed President Jim Bullard spoke of tightening in response to the recent CPI releases. This erased over a month of gains in a week as the price sank from $1900 to nearly below $1780. However, the Hulbert Gold Newsletter Sentiment Index which tracks the average recommended gold exposure among a subset of short-term gold timers is at -9.7%. This contrarian take is that gold rallies when this index sinks. The typical threshold for this index is -14.8%, but the dramatic move could be enough to start to buy. This index is one of the key items to watch as the price of gold falls so that you don’t miss the rebound.
FINSUM: Additionally Powell made it very clear that inflation is transitory and Bullard is in the minority on the FOMC. The Fed won’t pull back the reins until inflation is above its long-term goal and persistent.