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Chart Of The Week

Jul 30 2021

The 2021 EPS Rocket Ship

  • Jul 30, 2021

If you want to see a rocket ship, there’s no need to crane your neck upwards to see the latest exploits of our billionaire space cowboys. Rather, look to our earnings glidepath chart and marvel at the contrails of the 2021 full year operating earnings for the S&P 500.  

Jul 23 2021

It’s Not “Whether” You Sold In May, It’s “What”

  • Jul 23, 2021

Those who heeded the old advice to “Sell In May” have missed out on an additional 5% gain (and counting) so far in 2021. However, the best way to have played this seasonal anomaly over the years was not to have “sold-out,” but rather to have “reduced the beta” of one’s equity holdings versus cutting equity exposure outright. That strategy has paid-off handsomely the last three months, even as this “Nothin’ Matters And What If It Did” stock-market powers higher.

Jul 16 2021

A Closer Look At The “Rule Of Twenty”

  • Jul 16, 2021

Inflation and its potential impact on the stock market is the topic du jour, resurrecting ideas that were in vogue 30- to 40-years ago.

Steve Leuthold’s 1980 book, The Myths of Inflation and Investing, provided an exhaustive review of the evidence. But for lighter reading, more appropriate for a summer Friday, we revisit the “Rule of Twenty” developed by strategist Jim Moltz in the early 1980s.

Jun 25 2021

Visualizing U.S. Stock Market Dominance

  • Jun 25, 2021

It’s near the year’s mid-point and U.S. equities are doing what they’ve done nearly every year since the onset of the Great Financial Crisis: trouncing their foreign counterparts. The S&P 500’s YTD gain of 13.5% is about 500 basis points better than EAFE’s, and 800 basis points above that of the MSCI Emerging Markets Index.

Jun 18 2021

Price to Book: Obsolete, Or Just Misunderstood?

  • Jun 18, 2021

The Value style has broadly underperformed for more than ten years, and the blame for this dismal decade has often been placed squarely on the Price to Book metric. Could it be that Price to Book’s sullied reputation is undeserved?

Jun 10 2021

Stock/Bond Disconnect?

  • Jun 10, 2021

In the May Green Book, and again in the May 21st issue of “Chart of the Week,” we discussed the trailing one-year correlation between weekly percentage changes in the S&P 500 and the 10-year Treasury bond yield. Rollovers from high levels in this correlation have signaled most of the important pullbacks in the bond market over the last 20 years.

May 28 2021

Real Yields: Interesting, But Not So Helpful

  • May 28, 2021

After Consumer Price Inflation spiked to a 12 1/2-year high of 4.2% in April, there’s been a torrent of analysis decrying the collapse of “real yields”—including the real Treasury-bond yield, real S&P 500 dividend yield, and even the real S&P 500 earnings yield. Since all of these yields already traded at extremely low nominal levels, the inflation adjustment makes every one of them look even worse. For example, the real yield on 10-year Treasuries just sunk to -2.60%, the lowest reading since 1980 (Chart 1).

May 21 2021

What The Two-Month Stall In Bond Yields Tells Us

  • May 21, 2021

The 10-year Treasury yield has absorbed the past two months’ worsening inflation numbers by going exactly “nowhere.” Bond investors seem to be all-in on the Fed thesis that the inflation pickup is just transitory.

During the recent consolidation, however, the Treasury yield showed a subtle change in character—one that suggests there might be more inflation paranoia than meets the eye. The 10-year yield’s daily correlation with stock price movements flipped negative, and then plummeted toward a 21-year low. 

May 12 2021

Active Vs. Passive Return Drivers March 2021 Update

  • May 12, 2021

Our ongoing research into the relative performance of active vs. passive styles reveals that market conditions play a significant role in the active/passive return cycle. We identified a set of metrics that describe the market conditions we believe influence which management style is more likely to outperform. This note updates our data through March 2021.

Apr 30 2021

A COVID Weight-Loss Program For The 4% Club

  • Apr 30, 2021

While we’re still squeezing into our pants and fretting over our newest chin, the S&P 500’s three-largest firms have been shedding their COVID-weight gain at a measured pace for months. Whereas most people drop the pounds through vigorous activity, these firms have managed to slim down just by standing still.

 

Apr 23 2021

Earnings Are Back In Focus

  • Apr 23, 2021

Earnings releases (ER) are normally accompanied by large stock-price movements, either to the upside or downside.

Here, we computed the percentage of companies that registered a large move in their stock price on their ER day in the trailing three-month window (500 basis points up OR down). In order to normalize for non ER-day volatility, we computed the percentage of all companies that registered a significant price move on any day during the same period. The difference between the two is shown in Chart 1.

 

Apr 16 2021

How Much Inflation Is Too Much? It’s A Moving Target

  • Apr 16, 2021

In the latest Green Book, we noted that Producer Price Inflation does not usually become a challenge for the stock market until its annual rate breaks above 4.0%. The day that comment was published, the year-over-year gain in the March PPI for Finished Goods spiked to 6.0%, thanks mostly to the well-celebrated COVID-19 anniversary-effect. 

Apr 09 2021

Industry Group Dreams & Nightmares—The Bear Market Edition

  • Apr 9, 2021

Given that we've recently passed the one-year anniversary of the bear-market bottom of March 2020, we thought it might be interesting to apply our annual Dream/Nightmare exercise to periods following bear-market lows; the idea here being that a major market bottom may serve as a “reset” for new industry trends.

Apr 01 2021

Our Most Contrarian Industry Group Ideas

  • Apr 1, 2021

Contrarian investing is difficult from both an emotional and implementation standpoint. Often the consensus is right, and industry groups are out-of-favor for a reason. As the saying goes, “Don’t be contrarian just for the sake of being a contrarian.”

Mar 26 2021

Momentum: “New Junk” In The “Old Trunk”

  • Mar 26, 2021

March 23rd marked the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 bear-market bottom. We are all eager to turn the page on the pandemic ordeal and move forward to brighter days ahead. Looks like some big help is coming our way.

Mar 19 2021

A Flight Of Wee Dragons

  • Mar 19, 2021

In our mid-month Of Special Interest, “Valuation Extremes: Here Be Dragons,” we examined valuation outliers as a measure of market sentiment. The hypothesis was that exuberance is reflected in investors’ willingness to hold stocks priced on an aggressive “vision” of the future; companies that are either habitually unprofitable or trade at a Price/Sales ratio above 15x.

Mar 12 2021

Stocks And Yields Revisited

  • Mar 12, 2021

The S&P 500 and 10-Year Treasury bond yield could accomplish something fairly rare today by closing at “joint” 52-week highs. The relevant levels to meet or exceed are 3934.83 on the S&P 500 and 1.49% on the bond yield.

Feb 26 2021

Carbuncles, Diamonds, and Tears

  • Feb 26, 2021

High growth rates, innovation, and disruption are defining traits of the companies that have powered the market to recent highs, and the ARK Innovators Fund (ARKK) is an example of today’s enthusiasm for visionary growth stocks. Recent returns and growth in AUM have been nothing short of spectacular, and ARKK has become symbolic of today’s style of new-era growth investing.

Feb 19 2021

Has Liquidity Peaked?

  • Feb 19, 2021

The last few weeks offer plenty of evidence that the mania has moved into a more feverish phase, yet the Fed insists that it is still “not-even-thinking-about ‘thinking about’” raising interest rates. That dismissive attitude could well whip up an even higher fever in the months ahead.

Jan 29 2021

An Historical Look At Biden’s “Future”

  • Jan 29, 2021

We’ve read far too much about what Joe Biden and a newly-blue Congress might do in the months ahead, but less so about the conditions Biden and his team inherit. Such “initial conditions” usually have a heavy hand in policy outcomes, market outcomes, and even a president’s legacy.