The Two Words Every Investor Should Remember

All investors should do well to follow the example of the Boy Scouts when managing their investment portfolios. Be prepared.

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Flying Below The Radar

Members of the U.S. Federal Reserve have gathered for their latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting this week. The fact that this meeting is not followed by a press conference makes it a sleeper, but it is still worth watching for the important signals that come out of this latest gathering of what are arguably some of the most influential and powerful people in the world. What can we reasonably expect and how might the markets react?

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The Most Dangerous Game

It is an observation that I have been hearing frequently in recent years when it comes to investing in the U.S. stock market. What is it? Put simply, fundamentals no longer matter, and valuation is no longer a primary concern when making investment decisions. Simply scour the 52-week high list, identify those securities in a sustained uptrend, and ride the wave in stock prices higher valuations be damned. But only if it were that simple, for many investors are unwittingly playing a most dangerous game in today’s financial markets.

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Death Knell For The Bulls?

The U.S. economy remains sick at its core. Despite the celebration about the recent improvement in corporate earnings over the last few quarters, a closer look reveals that all is still not well. In fact, when one gets down into the nuts and bolts of the U.S. economy, in some respects it is mired in a slowdown that is already running in its third year and counting.

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Coming Down

One quarter of the latest earnings reporting season for 2017 Q2 is now in the books. And unlike the impressive strength seen throughout the previous reporting season, reported earnings this time around are coming down from initial expectations. Whether they stabilize or how much further they drop in the weeks ahead remain to be seen, but this latest development is a somewhat troubling start for a market that badly needs to maintain corporate earnings growth with tightening monetary policy looming on the horizon.

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