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Category Archives: Global Tactical Asset Alloction

Asset Allocation Insights – A Dicey Week Gets Investors to Pay Attention to Risk

Investors Pay Attention To Risk Again

  • Risky assets suffered large losses last week with the exception of REITS up over 3%
  • Fixed income also experienced losses as interest rates globally moved up yet again
  • In general, while the losses paled in comparison to the previous week, multi-asset investors continued losing capital
  • Within equities, US large cap ended up flat with Value strategies outperforming Growth by 1.3%
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets out-performed a global version and remains vastly ahead YTD
  • In general, higher risk multi-asset strategies under-performed last week but remain ahead YTD

Currencies:

  • The USD once again regained lost strength last week
  • The Brazilian Real further recovered as a pro-business President is on deck
  • EM currencies were mixed with the Peso and Yuan losing additional ground
  • The British Pound lost about 1.5% last week as Brexit negotiations continue without a clear outcome
  • The Yuan avoided being labeled a currency manipulator by the US Treasury but the trend is for further depreciation

Commodities:

  • Commodity indices gave back some of the gains from the previous week as oil prices retreated
  • Grain prices also retreated further but prices have stabilized from the bottom hit in the summer
  • Sugar and Coffee showed the most gains aided by an appreciating Brazilian Real
  • Gold and Silver were stable last week for a change but barring a real crisis continue on a downtrend especially in light of higher short-term interest rates

This Coming Week:

  • US risky assets keep outperforming YTD but last week was a down week across the board except for REITS
  • The worst performing asset categories are international equities with EM down almost 15% YTD
  • The critical variable to watch for this week is the US 10 Year Note – another spike up and risky assets will be under great stress
  • Our view is that volatility is here to stay
    • In fact, we see current asset class volatility as normal
  • We are also watching out for any strong jump in inflationary expectations
    • Tariffs are inflationary and will be reflected in higher consumer prices eventually
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency – this is turning out to be a lost year for EM investors
    • We still believe that an allocation is warranted
  • Value dramatically outperformed Growth last week and we are seeing faint signs of industry rotation toward value sectors
    • The Momentum trade while still ahead YTD is quickly losing strength
  • Earning season in the US is back with Amazon, Microsoft, and Google all reporting
  • The biggest issue for investors is lack of a reasonable hedge to equity risk

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – Commodities Roar Back

Commodities Roar Back

  • Risky assets suffered large losses last week with EM stocks taking the biggest beating
  • Fixed income also experienced losses as interest rates globally spiked up
  • Only Commodities as an asset class experienced positive returns
  • Within equities, US large cap lost the least as Value strategies actually showed slight gains
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets out-performed a global version and remains vastly ahead YTD
  • In general, higher risk multi-asset strategies under-performed last week but remain ahead YTD

Currencies:

  • The USD regained lost strength last week
  • The Brazilian Real spiked up as pro-business President is expected to be elected
  • EM currencies continue getting pounded with the Rand taking the biggest beating as SA enters a recession
  • As central banks normalize their policies expect enhanced volatility as market participants balance interest rate differentials with economic growth dynamics
  • The Yuan has stabilized after a period of depreciation – authorities have refrained so far from using a weaker currency to fight tariffs

Commodities:

  • Best week this year for commodity prices – potentially a wakeup call as investor update their inflationary expectations
  • Sugar and coffee prices were up the most boosted by the appreciation of the Brazilian Real
  • Grain prices recovered from previous week lows but until tariffs with China are not agreed to we should expect to see huge volatility
  • Oil keeps marching higher as economic growth remains robust and sanctions against Iran take a bite out of supplies
  • Gold and Silver were stable last week for a change but barring a real crisis continue on a downtrend especially in light of higher short-term interest rates

This Coming Week:

  • Risky assets keep outperforming YTD but last week was a down week across the board except for commodities
  • The critical variable to watch for this week is the US 10 Year Note – another spike up and risky assets will be under great stress
  • Our view is that markets will calm down and that risky assets will recover this week
  • We are also watching out for any strong jump in inflationary expectations
    • An important economic number to watch this week is US CPI on Thursday
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency – this is turning out to be a lost year for EM investors
  • Value dramatically outperformed Growth last week and we are seeing faint signs of industry rotation toward value sectors
    • The Momentum trade while still ahead YTD is quickly losing strength
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history?
    • A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare?
  • The biggest issue for investors is lack of a reasonable hedge to equity risk

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – International Assets Stage a Comeback

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • Risky assets continued recovering last week with International assets out-performing domestic assets
  • Developed market equities did best this week with EAFE out-performing the US
  • EM equity and bonds recovered from pretty poor momentum – currency helped last week for a change
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets under-performed a global version but remains vastly ahead YTD
  • In general, higher risk multi-asset strategies out-performed last week and remain ahead YTD

Currencies:

  • The USD gave up ground last week – the second week in a row
  • Foreign central banks are reading their way toward policy normalization
  • Within EM currencies the pattern was bullish with wide-ranging appreciation versus the USD
    • The Rand and Real recovered nicely
  • Among the major currencies, resource-oriented currencies such as the AUD and CAD appreciated the most
  • The Yuan has stabilized after a period of depreciation – authorities have refrained so far from using a weaker currency to fight tariffs

Commodities:

  • Lumber suffered a disastrous week as conditions of over-valuation are being worked through
  • Grains are getting whipsawed by trade war on/off issues but in general, benefited from the belief that negotiations will take place between China and the US
  • Coffee recovered along with the Brazilian Real
  • Oil keeps marching higher as economic growth remains robust and sanctions against Iran take a bite out of supplies
  • Gold and Silver were stable last week for a change but barring a real crisis continue on a downtrend

This Coming Week:

  • Risky assets keep outperforming despite political headwinds
  • The strong USD keeps crushing investors in international assets but should be losing some momentum.
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency
  • Growth is outperforming Value YTD but things may be turning around especially if interest rates remain range bound
  • Gold and Silver are losing their luster – not providing downside hedge and very driven by trends in short-term rates
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history?
    • A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare? Waiting for Impeachment?
  • Biggest issue for investors is lack of a reasonable hedge to equity risk

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – The Seesaw Continues But Risky Assets Continue Winning

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • Risky assets recovered last week – it seems like every other week we flip around – maybe this week is going to be good for bonds?
  • Developed market equities did best this week with EAFE out-performing the US
  • EM equity and bonds recovered from pretty poor momentum – currency helped last week for a change
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets under-performed a global version but remains vastly ahead YTD
  • In general, higher risk multi-asset strategies out-performed last week and remain ahead YTD

Currencies:

  • The USD gave up a bit of ground last week
  • Foreign central banks are reading their way toward policy normalization
  • Within EM currencies the pattern was mixed – the Rand and Rubble recovered nicely but the Brazilian Real continued its downward slide
  • Among the major currencies, the euro outperformed
  • The Yuan has stabilized after a period of depreciation but remains volatile within the “official” range

Commodities:

  • Grains are getting whipsawed by trade war on/off issues – Corn and soybeans continue being most at risk
  • Coffee also keeps getting pounded by the depreciating Brazilian Real
  • Oil is also getting whipsawed by political tensions – up a little last week as curbs on Iranian oil take effect
  • Gold and Silver were stable last week for a change but barring a real crisis continue on a downtrend

This Coming Week:

  • Are political issues in Washington of any concern to markets? Is the Manafort plea deal the beginning of the end?
  • The strong USD keeps crushing investors in international assets but should be losing some momentum.
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency -China has a lot to do with this given its weight in the MSCI index (30%)
  • Growth is outperforming Value YTD but things may be turning around especially if interest rates remain range bound
  • Global Tech has performed well this year but short-term it is in a break Down phase. More bad news to come or buy the dip? We are holding steady, not buying more.
  • Gold and Silver are losing their luster – not providing downside hedge and very driven by trends in short-term rates
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history? A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare? Waiting for Impeachment?

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – It was a bad week for all of us, Mr. President

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • President Trump wasn’t the only one having a bad week – is this a Fake Correction?
  • Cash is king once again but our risk aversion index is not picking up any fear
  • US assets lost less last week if that is any consolation
  • International equities lost the most value last week
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets out-performed a global version once again
  • Lower risk multi-asset strategies out-performed last week and are ahead in the last month

Currencies:

  • The USD was range bound last week but continues in a technical Up Trend phase
  • Within EM currencies the pattern was mixed
    • The Rand continued depreciating while the Brazilian Real regained some ground versus the USD
  • Within the major currencies, the yen outperformed
  • The Yuan has stabilized after a period of depreciation but remains volatile within the “official” range

Commodities:

  • Grains are getting whipsawed by trade war on/off issues
    • Corn and soybeans continue being most at risk but regained some ground last week while Wheat continues deteriorating
  • Oil is also getting whipsawed by political tensions – down over 3% last week after several up weeks
  • Gold and Silver lost more ground last week and the trend is down especially as ST interest rates keep climbing higher

This Coming Week:

  • Is cash the new King?
    • Bonds and stocks are over-valued but growth still holding up which is positive for stocks but for how long?
    • We still prefer risky assets but are lowering risk at the portfolio level.
  • Are political issues in Washington of any concern to markets? Our risk aversion index is not picking up any concern at the moment.
  • The strong USD keeps crushing investors in international assets but should be losing some momentum.
  • International equities keep losing ground to US stocks despite superior fundamentals – becoming the contrarian play of 2018
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency
    • China has a lot to do with this given its weight in the MSCI index (30%)
  • Growth is outperforming Value YTD but things may be turning around especially if interest rates remain range bound
  • Global Tech has performed well this year but short-term it is in a break Down phase. More bad news to come or buy the dip? We are holding steady, not buying more.
  • Gold and Silver are losing their luster – not providing downside hedge and very driven by trends in short-term rates
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history?
    • A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare? Waiting for Impeachment?

 

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – Rewarding Risk Takers

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • Equities had again a big week last week as the market focused on growth again
  • US assets once again dominated non-US assets as the US dollar regained some lost ground
  • US REITS have continued their comeback after falling apart earlier in the year
  • Commodity index composition is playing a big role as divergences among commodities are accentuated
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets slightly out-performed a global version
  • Higher risk multi-asset strategies out-performed last week

Currencies:

  • The USD was flat last week
    • Down against developed market currencies but up against em currencies
  • Within EM currencies the pattern was mixed
    • The Rand depreciated over 2% while Rubble and Brazilian Real continued in a downtrend
  • Among the major currencies, the US dollar lost the most ground versus the Swiss Franc
  • The Yuan has stabilized after a period of depreciation but remains volatile within the “official” range

Commodities:

  • Grains are getting whipsawed by trade war on/off issues
    • Corn and soybeans continue being most at risk
  • Oil is also getting whipsawed by political tensions but had an up week due to smaller inventories in the US, robust Chinese demand and output curbs in Iran
  • Gold and Silver lost more ground last week and the trend is down especially as ST interest rates keep climbing higher
  • The large fall in coffee prices last week was again blamed on the falling Brazilian real

This Coming Week:

  • Still watching the USD – crushing investors in international assets but should be losing some momentum
  • International equities keep losing ground to US stocks despite superior fundamentals
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency
    • China has a lot to do with this given its weight in the MSCI index (30%)
  • Growth is outperforming Value YTD but things may be turning around especially if interest rates remain range bound
  • Gold and Silver are losing their luster – not providing downside hedge and very driven by trends in short-term rates
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history?
    • A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare?
  • Macro Events: Manufacturing (JP, UK, Germany, US), Trade Balance (US, China), lots of Fed Governor Speeches

 

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights -Rewarding Growth Assets

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • Equities had a big week last week as the market focused on growth again
  • International assets dominated US assets as the US dollar lost some ground
  • EM stocks, in particular, had a good week, up 2.7%. Very little was currency related
  • European developed market equities also had a big up week (2.5%)
  • REITS had been slowly recuperating but last week they suffered a setback
    • Their behavior has recently become more aligned/correlated with equity markets so the poor performance comes as a surprise
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets vastly under-performed a global version
  • Higher risk multi-asset strategies out-performed last week

Currencies:

  • The USD lost some strength last week
  • Within EM currencies the pattern was mixed
    • The Rand appreciated over 2% but the real lost close to 5%
  • The Rubble continues imploding despite a jump in oil prices
  • Among the major currencies, the US dollar lost the most ground versus the Euro followed by the Pound
  • The Yuan has stabilized after a period of depreciation but remains volatile within the “official” range

Commodities:

  • Grains are getting whipsawed by trade war on/off issues
    • Corn and soybeans continue being most at risk
  • Oil is also getting whipsawed by political tensions but had a big up week due to smaller inventories in the US, robust Chinese demand and output curbs in Iran
  • Gold and Silver recovered a bit last week but the trend is down especially as ST interest rates keep climbing higher
  • The large fall in coffee prices last week was blamed on the falling Brazilian real – expect a reversal this week

This Coming Week:

  • Watching the USD – crushing investors in international assets but should be losing some momentum
  • International equities keep losing ground to US stocks despite superior fundamentals
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency
    • China has a lot to do with this given its weight in the MSCI index (30%)
  • Growth is outperforming Value YTD but things may be turning around especially if interest rates remain range bound
  • Gold and Silver are losing their luster – not providing downside hedge and very driven by trends in short-term rates
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history?
    • A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare?
  • Macro Events: Case-Shiller, US GDP, Japanese & German Inflation, rig count in US, Chinese PMI

 

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – The US Dollar is Killing my Best Ideas

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • The out-performance of domestic assets continued last week
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets vastly out-performed a global version
  • REITS had been slowly recuperating but last week they really took off
    • Their behavior has recently become more aligned/correlated with equity markets
  • International stocks continue under-performing despite cheaper valuations
    • EAFE in local currency is outperforming by 3.33% YTD
    • EM in local currency is outperforming by 5.13% YTD

Currencies:

  • The USD keeps chugging along notching weekly wins
  • EM currencies continue their pattern of depreciation
  • The biggest loser was the SA Rand – concerns over slower economic growth was a driver as well as contagion from the Turkish Lira
  • The rubble has stabilized but for how long?
  • The YEN was up slightly last week as monetary policy is likely to normalize soon in Japan

Commodities:

  • Grains are getting whipsawed by trade war on/off issues
  • Oil is also getting whipsawed by political tensions between the US and Iran – technicals are deteriorating
  • Gold and Silver continue a down-trend with little sign of relief especially as ST interest rates keep climbing higher
  • Lumber prices have become incredibly volatile and subject to trade issues between CA and the US

This Coming Week:

  • Watching the USD – crushing investors in international assets
  • International equities keep losing ground to US stocks despite superior fundamentals
  • EM equities in particular are taking a huge hit both on the asset side as well as currency
  • Growth is outperforming Value YTD but things may be turning around especially if interest rates remain range bound
  • Gold and Silver are losing their luster – not providing downside hedge and very driven by trends in short-term rates
  • What will make investors price risk more in line with history? A growth scare in the US, maybe? A real inflation scare?

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

Asset Allocation Insights – Domestic Assets Keep Outperforming

Weekly Asset Allocation Highlights

  • The out-performance of domestic assets continued last week
  • A 60/40 mix of purely US assets vastly out-performed a global version
  • US small cap stocks had an up week as well as US bonds
  • REITS had been recuperating but last week was a setback despite steady US rates
  • International stocks continue under-performing despite cheaper valuations

Currencies:

  • The USD keeps chugging along notching weekly wins
  • EM currencies continue their pattern of depreciation
  • The rubble had an especially tough week as further US sanctions are taking a bite
  • Among the majors, sterling took the biggest hit despite an increase in ST rates
  • Second big down week in a row for pound

Commodities:

  • Grains are getting whipsawed despite presidential assurances of price supports
  • Oil is also getting whipsawed by political tensions between the US and Iran
  • Gold and Silver continue a downtrend with little sign of relief especially as ST interest rates keep climbing higher
  • Lumber prices are breaking down due to over-valuation and a possible dispute with Canada over newly imposed tariffs

This Coming Week:

  • Q2 earnings in the US almost done – good season for most, good US growth
  • Watching the USD – huge effect on international markets especially
  • International equities keep losing ground to US stocks despite superior fundamentals
  • Growth keeps outperforming Value – turning point might not happen unless expectations for rising rates stabilize
  • Watching agricultural commodities for trade war effects

To read our full weekly report please click here

Eric J. Weigel

Global Focus Capital LLC

eweigel@gf-cap.com

___________________________________________________________________________________

Publications:

Weekly Asset Allocation Review – Free

Weekly Equity Themes Review – Free

The Equity Observer (Monthly) – Subscription Required

The Asset Allocation Advisor (Monthly) – Subscription Required

 

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