1st Quarter 2019

In the 4th quarter of 2018, we said; “I do truly believe when the dust settles a lot of these fears ruling the market today will turn out to be unfounded and never actually materialize. Per my analysis, it does look like there is significant upside to the markets when things settle down. But until then, we need to do the best we can with the cards we have been dealt.”

In the 1st quarter, the S&P got off to the best start to a year since 1998. In fact, the price appreciation for the market was 13.07%.   With this, it does appear that the fears that overwhelmed the market in the 4th quarter of 2018 got ahead of themselves and pushed the market down past a rational valuation level.

The question moving forward will focus on how high can the market go while the rate of earnings growth is slowing?

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1st Quarter 2019 Client Newsletter

4th Quarter 2018

The S&P 500 ended the 3rd quarter in good shape and usually the 4th quarter is pretty decent with a “Santa Claus” rally to end the year. However, this year Santa left us all a lump of coal! In fact, in December alone the price change on the S&P 500 was –9.18% and for the 4th quarter it was down 13.97%.   All in all, this terrible quarter ended up pulling the entire market down for the year. The price change on the S&P 500 for the year ended up being –6.24%.

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4th Quarter 2018 Client Newsletter

3rd Quarter 2018

We seemed to be treading water for most of the year…until this quarter came along. Last newsletter we talked about how earnings were booming, but the market was only going sideways. I reminded everyone that type of scenario creates an under-valued market and it is like a powder keg with a lit fuse; eventually it will explode. And it did last quarter.

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3rd Quarter 2018 Client Newsletter

2nd Quarter 2018

This quarter saw the S&P 500 rebound and post a price change of 2.93% for the quarter. All in all, that brings the change in the price of the market for the year to 1.67%. Not huge gains by any stretch of the imagination, but, like we’ve been talking about for quite some time, we should be in a grinding/sideways market until after the November elections.

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2nd Quarter 2018 Client Newsletter

1st Quarter 2018

Finally this market pulled back. After a record setting run to the upside with almost no downside volatility post-election 2016, this market had a negative quarter. For the record, the S&P 500 price change was –1.22% for the quarter. This is hardly a catastrophe, but after a rip roaring run, capped by a euphoric January, the sell off did fray a lot of nerves.

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1st Quarter 2018 Client Newsletter

4th Quarter 2017

KABOOM!!!! The 4th quarter showing nothing but a continuation of one of the greatest years in stock market history. For the quarter, the price change in the S&P 500 was 6.12%. And this makes the annual price appreciation 1942% for the market. However simply looking at the returns alone doesn’t tell the entire story.

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4th Quarter 2017 Client Newsletter

3rd Quarter 2017

As I mentioned in the last Update, there were a lot of things that could rattle the markets; Congressional stumbles, Presidential faux pas, and North Korean antics. And we got all of those, and more, but the market kept moving higher. All of those items did cause the markets to demonstrate increased volatility, but, nevertheless, the S&P 500’s price change for the quarter was +3.96%. And this brought the year to date change to +12.53%.

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3rd Quarter 2017 Client Newsletter

2nd Quarter 2017

Even with all the craziness going on in the world right now, the S&P 500 put up some very solid performance in the 2nd quarter. The price change in the market was 2.74% in the quarter, which brings the year-to-date appreciation through the end of the quarter to 8.27%.

This appreciation in the market was achieved despite a little more volatility in the market, as compared to the 1st quarter. But, nevertheless, nice gains were made.

Looking ahead, there are plenty of things that could make the markets jump around; Congressional stumbles, Presidential faux pas, North Korean antics. But on a fundamental basis, things do look pretty promising. I flesh out the “pretty promising” comment in more detail in the “Signal Through the Noise” article.

As always, the market can throw us curveballs from time to time and we are always on alert for that possibility.

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2nd Quarter 2017 Client Newsletter

1st Quarter 2017

The positive momentum that overtook the market following the election continued into 2017. For the first quarter, the S&P 500 posted a price change of 5.53%. January and February were really strong, while March showed a little bit of a pullback as Healthcare Reform delays called into question the speed at which Tax Reform can get done.

Nevertheless, the market has been vibrant and optimism seems to be ruling the day. No matter which metric you look at, Consumer Sentiment or Consumer Confidence, people are excited about the business friendly policies that are being pushed by the new Administration.

However, things never go straight up forever. We are employing prudent portfolio management tactics and are attempting to capture as much of the upside as we can, while keeping safeguards in place to protect capital when the inevitable pullbacks come.

This is an exciting time for sure and you can feel the Animal Spirits in the air.

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1st Quarter 2017 Client Newsletter

4th Quarter 2016

I mentioned in the last newsletter that I thought the election results and earnings season could spell gains for the market and, HOLY COW, we got some gains!!! Since the election, the S&P 500 has shot up 4.64% on a price basis and that pushed the gains for the year to 9.54%.

Obviously, the market won’t just go straight up every single day for the entirety of the President-elect’s tenure. However, I do feel the Animal Spirits have been awakened and there could be a very strong run for the market for the foreseeable future.

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4th Quarter 2016 Client Newsletter