Here are some investing ideas for 2015 from US News and World Report.
I am quoted on investing in regional banks.
Bank on regional banks.
Within the banking sector, look beyond the big players. “Shares of regional banks are particularly leveraged to rising interest rates,” says Jane Edmondson, founder and CEO of EQM Capital, a wealth management firm in San Diego. She’s also portfolio manager of the EQM Capital Mid Cap Quant on Covestor, an online investing marketplace. “The ongoing housing recovery has improved the quality of their balance sheets, positioning them for growth,” she says.
Looking at this oil slick, I am reminded that beauty can be found in the ordinary. Over this holiday season, take time to enjoy the beauty of your children, your aging parents, your good friends, your family pets, and even that rainbow oil slick in the mall parking lot. These are all the “ordinary” things that surround our lives and make them beautiful! Happy holidays everyone! – Jane Edmondson
Stocks fell in tandem with oil prices
After weeks of thinking that low oil prices were a positive for the market and the health of the economy, investors appear to have changed their minds. Concern about the effect of declining oil prices on energy sector profits is now trumping optimism over the positive impact of falling energy prices on consumer spending. The S&P 500 Index recorded its first weekly loss since early October ant its sharpest weekly decline in over two years. While energy stocks only represent a little over 8% of the S&P 500 Index, the drag from the sector still took its toll. The Dow was also an energy victim this week, seeing continued declines in Exxon Mobil and Chevron. The tech-heavy NASDAQ and the smaller-cap indexes fared better, as these companies tend to rely more on the domestic economy and the level of consumer spending.
Too much supply, not enough global demand
Oil prices fell this week, dragging energy stocks along with them. The first big drop occurred Wednesday, after the U.S. Energy Department reported a surprise increase in the nation’s crude supplies. This suggests that domestic producers were not ramping down production quickly enough to curb a further decline in oil prices. OPEC also lowered its estimate of global demand in the coming year, saying it anticipated that demand would fall short of its production target by over one million barrels a day. Finally, the International Energy Agency lowered its own demand forecast on Friday, spurring a further sharp drop in oil and stock prices.
Here are the top 5 factors hitting oil prices
1) An over-abundance of U.S. shale production – the excess production capacity ramping up over the last decade has met bad timing.
2) OPEC’s stubborn refusal to cut its production output.
3) Russia and Venezuela have been flooding the market with oil to support their fragile economies.
4) Iraq and Libya, which had largely halted production due to political conflict, have come back online.
5) The sluggish global economy has resulted in tepid demand growth.
Economic data failed to stem the tide
Data supporting the benefits of low oil prices on the broader economy failed to change market sentiment. Stocks enjoyed a brief bounce on Thursday following news of a sharp rise in retail sales in November. The National Federation of Retailers also reported strong sales for the “Black Friday” weekend. But on Friday, news of a jump in consumer sentiment failed to help stocks. The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan gauge of consumer sentiment reached its highest level in eight years, as consumer sentiment was helped by hopes for higher wage growth and lower gas prices.
|Index||Friday’s Close||Week’s Change||% Change
|S&P MidCap 400||1403.91||-38.36||4.57%|
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Dear Valued Client,
The third quarter of 2014 had its shares of ups and downs. Much of the market volatility was geo-politically driven this quarter with Russia, Scotland, and ISIS taking turns spooking the capital markets.
Here in the U.S. there were mixed economic signals leading investors to wonder when Janet Yellen’s led Federal Reserve will sound the “all clear” signal for the domestic economy and start to increase interest rates. The employment picture looks vastly improved with the unemployment rate dipping to 5.9%. But wage growth is still not impressive, contributing to weakness in areas like housing and discretionary spending. As a result, the Fed intends to wait a “considerable time” before it raises interest rates.
The S&P 500 Index climbed 0.6% in the quarter, setting new highs along the way. However, the quarter did not exactly end on a positive note, with the S&P 500 declining 1.6% in September, and off 4.6% from the record high it set on September 19th.
One reason for the market decline was the strengthening U.S. dollar relative to other global currencies. Investors are concerned that U.S. companies and their corporate earnings growth will be negatively impacted by a stronger dollar overseas.
However, one residual effect of a stronger dollar is the driving down of dollar-denominated oil prices. This is a positive for industries and sectors where oil is a major input in the cost of production. And to the extent that lower oil prices translate into lower prices at the gas pump, this is ultimately a good thing for the consumer.
So the question going into the end of the year is will economic strength at home offset weakness abroad? And as we approach earnings season, are current earnings expectations too hot, too cold, or just right?
I recommend clients remain well diversified in order to reduce their overall risk and volatility and maintain a long-term perspective.
If you have any questions or concerns about the market or your individual financial situation and investments please reach out!
The opinions expressed above should not be construed as investment advice. This letter is not tailored to specific investment objectives. Reliance on this information for the purpose of buying the securities to which this information relates may expose a person to significant risk. The information contained in this article is not intended to make any offer, inducement, invitation or commitment to purchase, subscribe to, provide or sell any securities, service or product or to provide any recommendations on which one should rely for financial, securities, investment or other advice or to take any decision. Readers are encouraged to seek individual advice from their personal, financial, legal and other advisers before making any investment or financial decisions or purchasing any financial, securities or investment related service or product. Information provided, whether charts or any other statements regarding market, real estate or other financial information, is obtained from sources, which we and our suppliers believe reliable, but we do not warrant or guarantee the timeliness or accuracy of this information. Nothing in this letter should be interpreted to state or imply that past results are an indication of future performance.Read More
- Upward momentum has paused and a pullback is overdue, but the longer-term trend is still likely higher.
- The Federal Reserve remains accommodative, but with QE ending and the first rate hike in the market’s sights, volatility is likely to rise.
- Outside the United States, Europe is flirting with another recession and deflation, Japan is trying to pull itself out if its long-standing malaise, and Chinese growth is slowing. Emerging markets look attractive.
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