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Insights That Matter

Equity Market Insights – Just When We Thought That Value Was Dead

Just When We Thought That Value Was Dead

  • Global equities once again out-performed bonds over the last 5 trading days
  • Developed Market International Equities provided the best returns last week aided by a nearly 4% return to Japanese equities
  • EM equities, while still on a downtrend, recovered somewhat last week (up 1.9%) but remain down nearly 9% for the year
  • Our models have recently turned more cautious about EM stocks despite being much cheaper than their developed market counterparts
  • Our top-rated asset class at the moment is International Developed Markets (EAFE)
  • Year-to-date US equities are vastly out-performing international assets – strong home bias fuelled by strong US growth plus an appreciating US dollar
  • Value outperformed Growth last week in the US and abroad – some of this is sector driven but we are starting to see signs of a quiet sector rotation going on in the market
  • Momentum strategies are losing their effectiveness but remain top dog for the year
  • There is no sign of fear among investors – our Risk Aversion Index remains in the Exuberant Zone
  • We remain perplexed by this lack of concern especially as central banks are becoming less stimulative and the possibility of an all-out Global Trade War is rising

 


 

Countries & Region:

  • Great last 5 days for global equities with Japan leading the pack
  • Equities vastly out-performed bonds last week
  • International equities and Emerging markets outperformed US equities
  • Growth under-performed Value over the last 5 trading days
  • Traditional Value sectors such as Materials and Financials made a comeback
  • Utilities were the only sector in the red

Style & Sector:

  • In the US, mega-caps outperformed
  • Value for once out-performed Growth –mainly due to a recovery of the Materials and Finance sectors
  • Growth and Momentum keep dominating YTD among US stocks but trailed last 5 days
  • Asian Developed markets (mostly Japan) propelled the MSCI EAFE to a 7% return
  • EM LATAM recovered last week but trouble continues in the area (Brazil and Argentina)

 


This Coming Week:

  • Risk Aversion continues to surprise on the downside – maybe old historical metrics don’t apply anymore? We don’t agree!
  • The bull market in US stocks remains intact but we are seeing evidence of some quiet industry rotation
  • The battle may not be between growth and value – feels more like momentum versus reversal
  • Tariff wars do not seem to have much of an effect on US stocks – will this persist? I
  • Small caps have quietly under-performed large caps over the last 3 months – has anybody noticed? YTD it is a different story
  • Will EM equities recover? Seems to be all about the direction of the US dollar at the moment with Argentina and Turkey inflicting further damage
  • Are Chinese equities going to further lose ground or is this temporary? Is the downtrend due to tariffs or domestic growth issues?

 


To read our weekly report including style factor breakdowns 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

 

Equity Market Insights – Investors Keep Glamorizing Growth Stocks

It’s Growth Over Value Again

  • Global equities once again out-performed bonds over the last 5 trading days
  • US Large Cap Equities outperformed Developed Market International Equities
  • EM equities, while on a downtrend, recovered somewhat last week (up 0.96%) but remain down 7% for the year
  • The recovery of EM as an asset class depends massively on what direction Chinese stocks take, but contagion concerns from the Turkish Lira and Argentinian Peso have increased significantly
  • Year-to-date US equities are vastly out-performing international assets – strong home bias fuelled by strong US growth plus an appreciating US dollar
  • Growth keeps outperforming Value in the US as well as in International markets
  • In the US last week was all about growth and momentum
  • There is no sign of fear among investors – our Risk Aversion Index remains in the Exuberant Zone. We remain perplexed by this lack of concern especially as central banks are becoming less stimulative and the possibility of an all-out Global Trade War is rising

 


Countries & Region:

  • Good week all around for global equities with Australia having recovered from last week’s loss
  • Among sub-asset classes, US Large Cap and Developed International performed the best
  • Equities once gain beat bonds by a handy margin last week
  • Growth outperformed Value over the last 5 trading days
    • Traditional Value sectors such as Staples and Telecom suffered losses
    • Tech has regained its mojo along with Consumer Discretionary
  • Energy stocks keep recovering – tensions in the Strait of Hormuz will provide further support for oil prices

Style & Sector:

  • In the US, mega-caps outperformed
  • Value once again under-performed Growth – a big portion of this differential is due to sector concentration differences
  • Growth and Momentum keep dominating among US stocks
  • Asian Developed markets (mostly Japan) propelled the MSCI EAFE to a 1.5% return
  • EM LATAM continues to struggle with Argentina becoming a concern (never mind Venezuela)

 


This Coming Week:

  • Risk Aversion continues to surprise on the downside – maybe old historical metrics don’t apply anymore? We don’t agree!
  • The bull market in US stocks remains intact with growth out-performing value – we don’t see anything that is going to change this dynamic
  • Tariff wars do not seem to have much of an effect on US stocks – will this persist? I
  • Is small cap outperformance about tariff “protection” or something else. We think that it is mostly about momentum
  • Will EM equities recover? Seems to be all about the direction of the US dollar at the moment with Argentina and Turkey inflicting further damage
  • Are Chinese equities going to further lose ground or is this temporary? Is the downtrend due to tariffs or domestic growth issues?
  • Not much in the way of important earnings in the US

 


To read our weekly report including style factor breakdowns 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

 

The Bull Market For US Stocks Remains Alive But What About Internationally?

Weekly Equity Market Highlights

  • Global equities out-performed bonds over the last 5 trading days but the big story is the effect of the US Dollar on international asset class performance
  • EM equities, while on a downtrend, recovered somewhat last week (up 2.6%) but remain down 8% for the year
  • The recovery of EM as an asset class depends massively on what direction Chinese stocks take – China carries a 30% weight in the MSCI EM index
  • Year-to-date US equities are vastly out-performing international assets – strong home bias fuelled by strong US growth plus an appreciating US dollar
  • Growth keeps outperforming Value in the US, but last week the margin was only 10 bp for the Russell 3000
  • In the US last week was all about market cap – the smaller the cap the better
  • There is no sign of fear among investors – our Risk Aversion Index remains in the Exuberant Zone. We remain perplexed by this lack of concern especially as central banks are becoming less stimulative and the possibility of an all-out Global Trade War is rising

 


Countries & Region:

  • Good week all around with Australia being the only down market
  • China recovered nicely but remains in a downtrend for the year
  • EM equities have been on a downtrend this year but got a reprieve last week – up 2.6%
  • Lower beta sectors under-performed last week giving up some of the gains from the previous week
  • Energy stocks keep getting whipsawed but had the best weekly performance – up 2.5%

Style & Sector:

  • In the US, small cap won big last week while low vol and yield strategies under-performed
  • Value and Growth had inline performance but YTD the gap remains quite wide in favor of Growth
  • EM and International Developed equities out-performed US strategies – big US dollar effect
  • EM LATAM continues to struggle with Argentina becoming a concern (never mind Venezuela)

 


This Coming Week:

  • Risk Aversion – expect the RAI to jump into the Neutral Zone
    • Investors keep under-pricing risk
  • Will US stocks keep leaping ahead of the rest of the world? Is this just dependent on the USD?
  • Tariff wars do not seem to have much of an effect on US stocks – will this persist even as Trade negotiations stall?
  • Will EM equities recover? Seems to be all about the direction of China and the the US dollar at the moment
  • Are Chinese equities going to further lose ground or is this temporary? Is the down trend due to tariffs or domestic growth issues?

To read our weekly report including style factor breakdowns 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

 

Yikes – The Asset Class with the Best Long-Term Prospects is Imploding

Weekly Equity Market Highlights

  • Global equities under-performed bonds by a wide margin over the last 5 trading days
  • EM equities, in particular, are taking a huge hit – down almost 6% in the last 5 days
  • We rate EM equities as having the best long-term prospects but yikes, this hurts
  • Chinese stocks are imploding – is this all about a trade war or more significant trade issues?
  • Year-to-date US equities are vastly out-performing international assets – strong home bias plus an appreciating US dollar
  • Earnings season in the US is almost over – a good season was had by most
  • Value lost less than Growth in the US last week – is that out-performance?
  • Low volatility and high yield had gained last week but value indices were down

 


Countries & Region:

  • Tough week all around with the US losing the least
  • EM equities have been on a downward trend this year and it got worse this week with the index down 5.3%
  • China’s equity market continues to be very volatile. Trade war jitters have had a much larger effect on Chinese stocks – stocks were down over 6% in the last 5 days
  • Global sectors had losses except for Utilities and Staples – a tough week overall
  • Energy stocks keep getting whipsawed by the commodity

 


 

 

Style & Sector:

  • In the US, low vol and dividend yield were winners over the last 5 trading days
  • The “Value” comeback seems highly dependent on the path of interest rates
    • When people worry about rising rates “value” stocks take a hit, when they don’t they do well
  • Momentum took a hit last week – this style is quickly losing steam but still remains top dog for 2018
  • EM and International Developed equities continue their down trend
  • A big factor in relative performance rankings is the direction of the US dollar

This Coming Week:

  • Risk Aversion – expect the RAI to jump into the Neutral Zone
    • Investors keep under-pricing risk
  • Will value only outperform growth when interest rates in the US drop?
    • Will EM equities recover? The Turkey currency crisis merits some attention. Watch out for contagion effects
  • Are Chinese equities going to implode or is this temporary? Is the down trend due to tariffs or domestic growth issues?

To read our weekly report including style factor breakdowns 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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