Volatility Craters As The Nasdaq Soars

Volatility is extremely low and stocks have relentlessly rallied. The rally has not been even among the indices with the Nasdaq outperforming and the Russell 2000 lagging. The Nasdaq is up 12.65% year to date even after being down Wednesday partially because of Apple’s earnings disappointment. The Russell 2000 is only up 2.39% and underperformed…

Oil Investment Boosts GDP Growth

Oil Drives Weak GDP Growth I would like to continue the discussion about oil’s impact on the Q1 GDP growth report. Q3 2016 had great growth which was surprising because economic growth has been tepid. It led to an extensive review of the report which led to the realization that it was temporarily boosted by…

Car Sales Remain Weak While Realized Volatility Plummets

Auto sales were responsible for the weak durable goods orders in the GDP report. It could be the catalyst of a recession. Therefore, it’s critical to focus on every new data point available in the car market. The latest information we have is in the chart below. As you can see Nissan, Toyota, Fiat Chrysler,…

Weak Soft Data A New Trend?

The new trend I am focusing my attention on is the deceleration of soft data. I am predicting this decline because soft data usually doesn’t surprise to the upside for long. It’s also clear that the hard data isn’t following suit which means the economy isn’t strong. The weak GDP report acts as a signal…

Earnings Growth And GDP Growth Diverge

There’s an anomaly which is playing out in Q1. Earning growth is accelerating, while the economy is decelerating. This is a point I’ve been making for a few weeks. I expect the Q1 earnings growth rate to be the peak of the year and I expect GDP growth to remain weak throughout the year. This…

Budget Deadline Pushed To May 5th

Stocks sold off on Friday despite the earnings beats from Amazon and Alphabet on Thursday afternoon. They helped the Nasdaq be the best performing index for the day as it was down 0.02%. Because the big technology firms have no impact on the Russell 2000, it fell 1.18%. The weak GDP report was the negative…

Bull and Bear Case For Earnings

As I mentioned in a previous article, earnings estimates vary widely. Anything can happen in a sense. The bull case before the election was that margins would increase to record highs. With the Trump tax cuts potentially in place, there are further tailwinds to earnings rising quickly. On the bear side, earnings estimates have been…

Atlanta Fed Says 0.2% Q1 GDP Growth

The Q1 GDP report will be released on Friday. Leading up the report, the Atlanta Fed’s GDP Now released its final estimate for Q1 which came in at 0.2% growth. This is down from 0.5% growth which makes it an outlier compared to the consensus GDP estimate. The estimate for real consumer spending growth fell…

Trump Releases Tax Reform Guidelines

In the lead up to the tax plan announcement, I made the point that if Trump was vague about his plan, stocks would rally on hope. Trump was vague, but it didn’t boost stocks because he was vague on the most important point stocks care about which is the repatriation tax holiday. Stocks care about…

Are Stocks Cheap Or Expensive?

The biggest question investors focused on earnings are trying to answer is how the gap between small cap and large cap firms’ margins will be closed. Either large cap firms will have their margins fall off the peak or small cap firms will see their margins rise to the 2013 peak. It’s possible that the…