The Independent Market Observer

The Stock Market's Rise: Will It Continue?

November 30, 2016

Over the past couple of weeks, everyone’s been wondering how long the stock market's “Trump bounce” will last. Several people have asked me whether a pullback is due and how bad it might be. Even as markets move higher, there is quite a bit of worry.

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Market Records and Your Investments

November 29, 2016

The stock market keeps hitting new highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed 19,000 for the first time last week, and the S&P 500 is up to 2,200, itself a record. In many ways, the market is off to the races.

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Monday Update: Home Sales and Business Orders Strong

November 28, 2016

Overall, last week’s data was quite positive. Existing home sales did very well, while there were signs that business investment is looking up. Although the news was not all good, most of it was.

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Black Friday by the Numbers

November 25, 2016

With everyone out shopping today, we'll soon be seeing the usual slew of Black Friday data (and the instant economic analysis that goes along with it). 

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Post-Election Bond Rates and the Stock Market

November 22, 2016

The other day, we talked about the bond market and the effects of the recent sharp increase in interest rates. Although the immediate impact was real, we concluded that the adjustment was more a return to normal than something worse. In other words, nothing to worry about.

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Monday Update: Consumers Still Shopping

November 21, 2016

Last week’s economic data offered an encouraging picture of where the Trump era will be starting from.

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2017 Forecast: Things Are Looking Up

November 18, 2016

I usually begin thinking about my economic forecast for the next year around the third quarter. At that point, the current year is largely on the books, and we know enough to start looking ahead a bit.

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Post-Election Bond Yields and Fixed Income

November 17, 2016

Since the election, much of the financial commentary has centered on the stock market's surprising surge. In fact, though, the largest changes by far have been in expectations for interest rates, which, in turn, have affected the bond markets.

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The Trouble with “Low-Volatility” Strategies, Part II

November 16, 2016

Brad here. Back in August, Peter Essele, a lead portfolio manager at Commonwealth, wrote a very timely piece on the risks involved with low-volatility strategies. When we were talking the other day, he suggested writing a follow-up on that—and given what has happened since his original post, I agreed it was a great idea.

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Trump’s Policies and the Law of Unintended Consequences

November 15, 2016

As I mentioned last week, Donald Trump’s administration could have a number of positive effects on the U.S. economy. With government spending growth set to ramp up—and taxes and regulations set to be cut—you can almost see a potential boom forming. It could be a good couple of years to come.

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Monday Update: Better Than Expected

November 14, 2016

Last week’s big economic and market news was the election. What might it tell us about the future? Let’s take a closer look.

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The Trump Era: What Happens Now?

November 11, 2016

As predicted, the world did not end upon Donald Trump’s election to the presidency. In fact, from an economic and market perspective, it has appeared to be good news, at least so far. Of course, it’s still early days, and the question now is, What happens next?

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The Trump Bounce and the Monthly Market Risk Update: November 2016

November 10, 2016

Although many were predicting a significant pullback on Mr. Trump’s election, we, in fact, got a fairly significant advance. What’s up with that? I suspect there are several reasons.

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Election Surprise: For the Economy, Maybe Just Another Bump in the Road

November 9, 2016

We woke up this morning to a new era.

For the past several years, the United States has had either a Democrat-controlled government or a divided government. As a result of yesterday’s vote, Republicans will soon control the presidency, the Senate, and the House.

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Appearance on CNBC's Worldwide Exchange, November 9, 2016 [Video]

November 9, 2016

This morning, I was on CNBC’s Worldwide Exchange discussing deregulation and offering thoughts on market volatility in the wake of the presidential election.

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Get Out and Vote!

November 8, 2016

It’s finally Election Day, the moment when all the sound and fury comes down to one thing: a voter, standing in a booth, making a decision about how he or she envisions the future. Everything up until now has been so much noise, but this is what matters.

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Monday Update: Generally Good News Points to Continuing Growth

November 7, 2016

Last week’s wide-ranging data started to give us an idea of whether economic growth (and perhaps even faster growth) continues.

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Economic Risk Factor Update: November 2016

November 4, 2016

After significant bouncebacks in the major indicators over the past couple of months, we saw a bit of a pullback in several components of the data in October. With signs of slowing job growth and a drop in consumer confidence, the positive changes in trend we hoped for last month may have been put on hold.

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In Austin, Grateful to Be Giving Back

November 3, 2016

Today will be a short post. I’m in Austin, Texas, at the Commonwealth National Conference, and I’m heading out early this morning to participate in our giving back initiative. 

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3 Big Themes that Won't End with the Election

November 2, 2016

After months of election hype and angst, next week we should know who the next president and Congress will be. What then? 

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Market Thoughts for November 2016 [Video]

November 2, 2016

As expected, October was a tough month for markets, as uncertainty surrounding the upcoming election and the future of interest rates continued to rattle investors.

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Election Countdown: One Week to Go

November 1, 2016

A few weeks ago, I wrote a piece on what the election means for investors’ portfolios. Longer term, the answer was not much. Shorter term, there’s potential for market volatility, but the fundamental fact is that the U.S. economy should continue to grow, and financial markets—and investors—should continue to benefit from that growth.

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