The Independent Market Observer

Does Market Turbulence Make Sense?

February 26, 2021

We have had some turbulence in the market over the past couple of days. The bond market briefly seized up, with interest rates up by surprising amounts. This, in turn, shook the stock market, taking it down from the highs by about 4 percent for the S&P 500 and almost 8 percent for the Nasdaq. On top of all that, we have had events such as the ongoing GameStop show and the explosion of SPAC offerings. With everything that is going on, the recent pullback, and the signs of frenzy, is it time to worry? My take: not yet.

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Markets Hold Gains Despite Rising Rates

February 25, 2021

*I will be alternating the text and video versions of this update on a weekly basis. This week is text, next week will be video, and so forth. As always, thanks for reading and watching.

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Own the Future: Looking at a Growth Portfolio

February 24, 2021

I am sitting down with an advisor and a client this afternoon to discuss a portfolio. Usual enough. But in this case, the portfolio looks a bit different. It has a large number of individual stocks, most of which are in the tech space. Of course, it has done very well over the past year or more.

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What Do Higher Interest Rates Mean?

February 23, 2021

One of the most common types of questions I have gotten recently has been around interest rates. Rates are going up, and the concern has largely been whether this is a sign of pending inflation. As both my colleague Anu Gaggar and I have written recently, the answer is no, higher rates do not mean inflation is coming. They do mean several other things, however—some bad and some good.

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Monday Update: Retail Sales Surge as Economic Recovery Accelerates

February 22, 2021

Last week saw a number of important data releases, with the much-better-than-expected January retail sales report and strong industrial production report serving as highlights. This will be another busy week for updates, with a focus on consumer confidence, durable goods orders, and the January personal income and spending reports.

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Coronavirus Update: February 19, 2021 [Video]

February 19, 2021

Today I'd like to provide an update on the coronavirus, including the economic and market implications. On the medical front, we appear to be well past the peak of the third wave, with daily infection rates and hospitalizations down. A more contagious variant of the virus could start another wave of infections, although there are no signs of that happening yet.

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Economic News Showing Surprising Strength

February 18, 2021

*Starting next week, February 25, I’ll be publishing my coronavirus update every other week.

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