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Interest Rates
Over the last week, value stocks have poised very impressive gains, while many of the momentum names have really struggled.  This is obviously very good for our deep value investment portfolios.  I want to emphasize, we should never get too excited or upset by short-term performance metrics.  With that said, value stocks are as cheap...
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This has been a very busy week for earnings releases on some of our largest investments.  I just wanted to provide a quick update on a few of them, as they were meaningful. Assured Guaranty (AGO), was up roughly 7% after reporting a very strong quarter and a particularly attractive acquisition.  Net income was $142MM,...
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On August 1st, markets across the globe were rattled as President Trump announced new tariffs on China.  Stocks plunged and the 10-year Treasury yield dropped below 1.9%.  The news shouldn’t have been such a shock as it has become increasingly clear that China hopes to stall.  If a new administration takes over in 2020, it...
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Most financial advice starts with an asset allocation model.  These asset allocation models typically use information from the past, typically the last 30-40 years or so, and then project that into the future.  The big flaw in the process is that they don’t factor in changes in starting conditions and valuations.  For instance, on January...
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In a recent interview on CNBC, Warren Buffett mentioned that if interest rates were to stay below 3% on the 10-year, stocks are incredibly cheap.  I talked about the same thing in the recent podcast with Tobias Carlisle.  The reason that this is so, is because interest rates have an almost gravitational impact on stocks....
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Well that was one heck of a week.  While I certainly was not smart enough to predict the results of the election, it has had a profound impact on my expectations for us as investors.  For the last 7 years, I’ve been one of the most vocal advocates of financial stocks that I am aware...
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I’ve been warning all year about a clear and obvious bubble in consumer staples stocks.  The same can be said for utilities and many areas on the fixed income market.  This bubble has been built on the pervasive market sentiment that as long as the dividend yield is reasonably greater than what can be obtained...
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The biggest U.S. banks have now reported 3rd quarter earnings and they have all exceeded expectations.  2016 started so horribly for the big banks.  Poor economic data globally diminished the prospects of rate hikes, oil’s plunge created worries about the need for increased reserve provisioning, and Brexit had investors worried of a systemic collapse.  I...
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This morning I was reading an interesting Bloomberg article on the lack of savings being accumulated by a large percentage of the population, including those earning between $100-$150K per year. Astonishingly in the survey, close to 50% of those have less than $1,000 in savings, and about 18% have absolutely nothing. Even those who earn...
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After a month and a half of low volatility, where stock indexes failed to move by more than 1%, volatility has rushed back onto the scene over the last several days. Frankly, this is very normal market behavior, as periods of calm usually presage periods of volatility. One shouldn’t get complacent when things are quiet,...
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