Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Thursday, 17 May 2018 10:37

The Stock Market Has a New Boss

(New York)

Equity investors need to accept a new truth, says the Wall Street Journal—that earnings and fundamentals have given way to a new “boss” of the markets. Instead of stocks trading based on the performance of companies, they are now trading almost squarely on movements in rates. Recent equity performance could not have made the new reality more clear—companies saw outstanding earnings performance, yet stocks have simply muddled through. The reason why—yields have been moving higher on Treasury bonds.

FINSUM: The current obsession with yields reminds us of the 2014-2015 mode for stocks, when everyone was tied up on whether the Fed would start hiking or not.

Thursday, 17 May 2018 10:35

Strong Earnings Mean the Market Falls

(New York)

If there was ever a counterintuitive sentence about stocks, it is the title to this article. However, that is what has proven to be true in the past. According to research produced by the Wall Street Journal, stock markets tend to perform poorly after great earnings seasons. The study found that over the last seven years, both US and European stocks tend to perform poorly following great earnings. Perhaps even more interestingly, when earnings undershot estimates, stocks tended to perform better than average.

FINSUM: This is a tough one to explain except by taking account of markets’ pre-pricing of earnings. Nonetheless, something of which to be mindful.

(New York)

Morgan Stanley has put out a unique list of stocks. The bank has published a piece outlining what it sees as the thirty best stocks for the medium term. The picks are based on having a sustainable competitive advantage and were viewed as having the best chance in this sideways-moving market. Some of the picks include: Accenture, Alphabet, BlackRock, BNY Mellon, Charles Schwab, Dollar General, JP Morgan, Microsoft,

FINSUM: This is a very interesting list, especially because it is cross-sector (which does not happen as much given the sector-first structure of equity research). It was also particularly useful that many of these names are in wealth or asset management, allowing advisors special insight.

Wednesday, 16 May 2018 09:40

A Real Estate Crisis Looms

(New York)

Investors beware, credit quality is quickly eroding in the real estate sector. While lending standards started strong after the Crisis, they have eroded significantly in the last few years as investor demand for yields has pushed lenders further down the credit spectrum and eroded protections. The credit quality of both prime and sub-prime borrowers has fallen and the popularity of CRT (credit risk transfer) securities, or mortgage bonds not fully backed by Fannie and Freddie, has risen. Worryingly, yields have not reacted to the decline in quality, as such risky CRT bonds have recently traded at less than a 100 bp premium to Treasuries.

FINSUM: So the big worry with mortgage bonds is that they always collapse faster than any model can predict. Because mortgage payments are so linked to the underlying economy and employment, when a recession happens, the defaults just flood in. We could be headed in that direction.

Wednesday, 16 May 2018 09:38

Yields are About to Hit 3.5%

(New York)

The long-time biggest bond shop on Wall Street (actually they are in California) has just put out a stark warning to investors—ten-year Treasuries are going to hit 3.5% in the near term. The manager thinks yields will make it to that level this year but then stall. Above 3.5%, they say, yields would have a detrimental effect on growth and that as yields rise investors will be moving their money into different asset classes.

FINSUM: A 3.5% yield on the ten-year would be a pretty attractive proposition to many, and it seems likely that given how that figure would be simultaneously appealing and a warning of poor future growth, investors will likely move out of equities.

Contact Us



Subscribe to our daily newsletter