2019 Outlook: It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Investing)

It was only just a few short months ago that the sun was shining brightly over investors with the U.S. stock market trading at new all-time highs as recently as late September. But in the time since U.S. stocks have descended into free fall with the headline benchmark S&P 500 Index momentarily grazing what many consider bear market territory at down -20%. While stocks may soon rally strongly and quickly erase much if not all of the recent declines in value in the coming weeks, the events of the fourth quarter of 2018 cannot be undone, as they are likely foreshadowing what could become a very challenging year ahead in 2019.

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What Now?

It was a heck of a week. The S&P 500 Index dropped this week by more than -7%, which marked its worst weekly performance in more than seven years. Following this drop, the benchmark index closed the week at more than -9% below its ultra long-term 400-day moving average. Put simply, it looks and feels ugly out there right now. So what should stock investors reasonably expect going forward from here?

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Bear Market Bound: A Market Idyl

A storm is coming. It has been a notoriously bad December for stocks so far with only six short trading days to go before the year is out. How bad has December been? And what might it be foreshadowing for the year ahead?

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Luckenbach, Texas, We Have A Problem

Waylon and Willie and the boys, where are you all now? For the first time since the calming of the financial crisis nearly a decade ago, the large cap U.S. stock market as measured by the S&P 500 Index is feeling pain. Not the pain from 2011 or 2015-16 that was grounded in reality but was quickly sedated away by phantasmal stock market gains. Today, U.S. stocks are feeling real pain like a trauma patient finally being allowed to awaken from a decade-long coma or weaned from a prolonged morphine drip. Indeed, we are long overdue to get back to the basics of investing in capital markets. But will policymakers allow the markets to get on with it?

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Enter Santa Man

An unforgiving autumn. U.S. stock investors have been stirred once again in recent weeks from their prolonged monetary stimulus-induced coma. Since its final peak in early October, the S&P 500 Index has fallen by more than -9% to date through Wednesday’s close and by more than -11% along the way on a peak-to-trough basis. Is the decade-long stock bull market finally over? Is now the time for investors to raise cash and head to the exits?

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