A Surprising New Portfolio Diversifier

Portfolio diversification is a primary objective for most investors in any market environment. And it is a particular priority today for many that wish to participate in any further upside the aging bull market may provide in the coming months while also seeking to protect against downside risk. Normally for stock investors, true portfolio diversification is achieved through allocating to other vastly different and generally uncorrelated asset classes such as long-term Treasuries and gold. But in 2014, a surprising new category has emerged from within the stock market itself to become an effective portfolio diversifier in the current environment. This category is the utilities sector, and it may now be worth another look following a recent pullback.

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

Surveying The Stock Market Battle Lines

The U.S. stock market appears sound following another eventful week. After exploding to new all-time highs on Monday and Tuesday, stocks were turned back at the 1900 level on the S&P 500 Index and finished the week effectively flat from last Friday. But while the stock market uptrend remains firmly intact, signs of erosion continue to accumulate under the surface. And given that it has been an unusually long time since the stock market has endured a meaningful double-digit pullback, it is worthwhile to step back from the daily lens and survey the stock market battlefield from a much broader view in an effort to determine what might be coming in the days, weeks and months ahead.

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

QE? We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ QE!

With the U.S. Federal Reserve’s third quantitative easing cycle drawing to a close over the next few months, it is worthwhile to explore the expected impact across asset classes once this program finally ends. By far more than any others, two major asset classes have been grossly misperceived throughout the post crisis period regarding how they are likely to fare without the steady torrent of liquidity from the Fed. For while stocks are likely to face a more challenging new reality, both U.S. Treasuries and gold may not just survive, but actually thrive once QE3 draws to a close.

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

The Four Horsemen Of The Stock Market Apocalypse

Storm clouds continue to accumulate on the stock market horizon. Following an impressive five-year rally that saw stocks not only rebound from its financial crisis lows but also explode to new highs, signs are continuing to emerge that a change may soon be coming. So while the skies remain generally sunny over the U.S. stock market today with the major averages continuing to set new highs amid notably persistent investor bullishness, it may not be long before markets find themselves confronted with the final judgment when the markets are ultimately forced to begin truly working through all of the excesses that were accumulated first leading up to the financial crisis and then even more so in its aftermath. It may be a few months, a couple of years or perhaps even longer before we finally arrive at this inflection point. Then again, it may have just now gotten underway. Only time will tell. But regardless of the timing, as long as the global economy continues to languish, debt continues to accumulate, and geopolitical tensions continue to mount, such a judgment day is coming. Fortunately, for those investors concerned about such an outcome, investment markets provide not only a way to protect against potential losses but also to achieve impressive rewards for those that are best prepared.

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

Eric Parnell Positions For 2014: The Payoff In Precious Metals Has Enormous Potential

The following article was published on Seeking Alpha as part of their annual Portfolio Positioning series.

This is the ninth piece in Seeking Alpha’s Positioning for 2014 series. This year we have once again asked experts on a range of different asset classes and investing strategies to offer their vision for the coming year and beyond. As always, the focus is on an overall approach to portfolio construction.

Eric B. Parnell, CFA is the Founder & Director of Gerring Capital Partners, a Registered Investment Advisor based in Chester County, Pennsylvania and serving clients nationwide. He founded his firm in 2005 to provide high quality, personalized investment solutions for clients at a low cost. Eric is a regular contributor to Seeking Alpha and is widely seen in the media on radio and television. In addition to his work with Gerring Capital Partners, Eric serves as a professor in the Economics and Finance department at West Chester University teaching courses in Finance, Economics and Statistics.

Seeking Alpha’s Abby Carmel and Jonathan Liss recently spoke with Eric about his outlook for precious metals in 2014, and how he would advise investors to position portfolios accordingly. [Read more...]

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