A Bullish Case For Utilities

Stocks have endured a difficult stretch since last peaking in late July. But not all areas of the market have been struggling recently, as some have been performing rather well. Leading among these is the more defensive utilities sector, which has gained at a time when so many others have fallen. And the good news is that the sector continues to offer a variety of advantages that may appeal to investors looking to position for what could be a more turbulent market in the years ahead.

Please click on the link to read more of my article on Seeking Alpha.

Winners And Losers Since The Bull Market Peak

The U.S. stock market is currently in correction. And given that we are now more than four months removed from the last time the S&P 500 Index set a new high, it’s worthwhile to consider the following question. Is it possible that a new multi-year bear market is already well underway? Only time will tell. But if indeed market historians someday look back on 2015 in the same way that they do 2000 and 2007, it’s worthwhile to consider the particular segments of capital markets that are following the stock market to the downside and perhaps more importantly those that may already be assuming the lead to the upside.

Please click on the link to read more of my article on Seeking Alpha.

Friday’s Stock Sell-Off And The Fed’s Epic Fail

The U.S. Federal Reserve had four possible outcomes coming out of their latest FOMC meeting on Thursday. And it seems that the Fed may have ended up with the worst possible result.  Not only did the Fed potentially forgo their last reasonable opportunity to get off of the zero bound and squeeze in an interest rate increase for a future rainy economic day, but they may have also unwittingly sparked a new wave of downside stock market volatility that they have been so tediously careful to avoid over the last several years.  At least so far, the stock market has voted down the Fed’s latest decision. But now that the chatter and uncertainty about whether the Fed is going to raise interest rates is behind us at least for the next few weeks, what exactly can we reasonably expect from capital markets from here?

Please click on the link to read more of my article on Seeking Alpha.

The Worst-Case Scenario For The Fed

In case you haven’t heard, the U.S. Federal Reserve is meeting this week to decide whether to raise interest rates off of the zero bound for the first time since the financial crisis several years ago. Whether the Fed is or isn’t going to raise interest rates by one quarter of one percentage point on Wednesday has become one of the most overly tortured topics for discussion in recent memory. But while the market impact should be relatively muted – if investors aren’t prepared for the fact that the Fed may raise interest rates by now, they never will be – the stakes for the Fed itself are actually fairly high. The Fed desperately wants to raise interest rates, not because the economy is so strong but so that they can have a policy buffer in preparation for the next recession. But after too many years of waiting and coddling the markets, they are now very late in seeking to make such a move. And a misstep on Thursday could effectively close the window on their ability to raise rates going forward.

Please click on the link to read more of my article on Seeking Alpha.

You Don’t Need A Recession To Fall Into A Bear Market

It is a declaration that I frequently see in comment section discussions on Seeking Alpha. The basic assertion is the following: the U.S. economy is not showing signs of entering into recession, thus stocks are not at risk of falling into a sustained bear market. Unfortunately, this conclusion is not necessarily true. For history has shown on numerous occasions that you do not need to have an economic recession looming on the horizon to see U.S. stocks fall into a bear market.

Please click on the link to read more of my article on Seeking Alpha.


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