Word on Wealthstreet Blog

Saddled with Uncertainity

By Joe Ray

A relatively flat stock market obscures the volatility and uncertainty that characterized this third quarter. Trade was the biggest issue going into the summer and as we exit the warm weather little progress with China has been made. Same could be said for other important trade issues such as Brexit and congressional passage of the…

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Don’t Fight the Fed

By Michael Kane

In 2008, the Federal Reserve lowered the Federal Funds rate to zero in an effort to stabilize financial markets and stimulate economic growth resulting from the Financial Crisis.  This was an extraordinary measure to deal with extraordinary times.  Over the subsequent years the financial system, markets and the economy slowly recovered. Then began the debate,…

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Stocks Exert Their Muscles

By Michael Kane

There has always been some disconnect between stocks, bonds, and the economy. Stocks and the people who own are often the optimists of the group. They look forward and try to extrapolate the future winners and losers, willing to pay multiples of earnings or revenue in order to own a part of a company’s or…

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May You Live In Interesting Times

By Joe Ray

May you live in interesting times…  Forgive me if I have used this phrase in a previous article, but it is again on my mind.  While the phrase is intended to sound like a blessing, it is always used ironically as a curse.  Often attributed to the Chinese, though its origin is debated, it did…

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Don’t Fight the Fed

By Michael Kane

What a difference three months makes.  In mid-December the Federal Reserve raised the Fed Funds rate by 0.25%, the 4th such increase during 2018.  The December increase in the Fed Funds rate caused elements of the yield curve to invert (short-term rates higher than long-term rates) which is often a precursor to recession.  The economic…

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The Fed Blinks

By Joe Ray

No one will ever be sure why Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and his associates decided to raise rates on December 19, 2018 in the face of Brexit uncertainty, trade tensions with China, and quantifiable signs of a slowing domestic economy. President Trump had publicly criticized Chairman Powell and the Fed for its seemingly steadfast…

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Crisis of Confidence

By Joe Ray

The fourth quarter began with Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell, making unscripted comments suggesting that the Federal Reserve was on “automatic” pilot. While unscripted and limited, markets began a sharp descent on the belief that these comments were in stark contrast to the Federal Reserve’s traditional stance of data dependency to both inflation and employment.…

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Good Riddance 2018

By Michael Kane

Volatility was truly back in 2018.  The year began well with the S&P 500 gaining over 5% in January, but then through mid-February it quickly suffered a 10% correction.  From there the U.S. stock market again rallied and by the end of the third quarter the S&P 500 was up over 10%.  The fourth quarter…

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Nice Quarter!

By Michael Kane

The third quarter of 2018 was a very good one for U.S. stock markets with the S&P 500 recording a gain of 7.7% bringing the year to date gain to 10.6%.  International markets have not performed nearly as well as the U.S. market this year as the MSCI EAFE (Europe, Australasia, Far East) Index was…

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The Third Quarter Was Stellar for Stocks

By Joe Ray

The  third quarter was stellar for stocks. Despite the imposition of tariffs on China, increasing election uncertainty and a number of trade issues, stocks continue to march forward. There are clearly some changes in leadership in recent weeks as the S&P 500 outperformed the NASDAQ for the first time in a while. The FAANG stocks…

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