Why does the market keep going up? It's earnings.

Last August, Chris visited the Reuters TV set.  Yesterday, I had the pleasure of dropping in at Reuters TV in Times Square to talk markets with anchor Fred Katayama. We talk bank earnings, S&P 500 earnings, and Costco.

Appearance on Reuters TV

Last Thursday I had the pleasure of visiting Reuters TV in Times Square to talk markets with anchor Fred Katayama.

Will the stock market boom or bust in 2017?

As we near a close to 2016, it is time to look forward to 2017. We have done this in 2014, 2015, and 2016 so it is becoming a tradition to see which strategists did well and which missed the mark. What do the experts think will happen in 2017 and should we even care?

Perhaps you are familiar with Philip Telock's landmark UC Berkeley study that looked at 82,000 predictions over 25 years by 300 leading economists. It turned out that their so called expert views were no better than random guesses, and worse, the more famous, the less accurate the prediction.

Last year, the strategists predicted a bull market for 2016 and they almost hit the number right on the mark. Their average forecast was for a 7.2% gain in the S&P 500 to 2215. They should get a round of applause as the S&P finished at 2239. Well done. Deutsche Bank's David Bianco gets the highest grade with a forecast of 2250, only missing by 11 points. Barclays' Jonathan Glionna should also be given a trophy as he was within 2% for the past couple of years. Let's look at the numbers.

The Downside of Passive Investing

Earlier this month, I was invited to make an appearance on CNBC's "The Closing Bell" to discuss the topic "Is this the end of a stock picker's market?" I enjoyed the lively debate with Ross Gerber and Evan Newmark. In case you missed it, click the video link below. Since one can only say so much in a 4 minute segment, I'd like to share some additional thoughts with our loyal Runnymede readers.

Many articles have been written about the shift from active to passive investing. The thesis is simple. The majority of active mutual fund managers underperform their index and also charge a higher fee. This is a double whammy for an investor's bottom line. Therefore, the solution seems simple: move your money into low cost index funds and that should lead to higher returns over the long term. Unfortunately, it's not that easy. Let's take a look at the potential pitfalls of passive investing.

The 3 Biggest Fixed Index Annuity Myths

 

Transcript:

The Runnymede blog has become one of the most visited sites for annuity reviews with over 100k views. Since 2013, I’ve been writing independent annuity reviews to help buyers like you understand the complexities of annuities and truly understand what the products can deliver. Today I’m going to talk about the 3 biggest fixed index annuity myths.

The Fed Shows Their Next Recession Plan: Negative Interest Rates

While many economists have been (incorrectly) predicting a September rate hike from the Fed, Runnymede has been saying that the Fed won't hike rates since the beginning of the year and with recession on the horizon believe that there may be no rate hike in 2016 either.

With growth slowing around the world and inflation at zero, the Fed is unlikely to move rates off the zero level. In any case, the most surprising news from the September FOMC meeting is that one member predicted negative rates in 2015 and 2016! Yes you read that correctly. While the majority of the Fed is still predicting (poorly) a rate hike in 2015, there is one member that wants to go to negative rates. In Europe, the Swiss, Swedish and Danish central banks already have negative rates to stave off the risk of deflation.

What is Your Strategy in Volatile Markets?

World stock markets have been increasingly volatile this summer. Returns for market indices have turned negative and the S&P 500 suffered its first 10% correction since 2012. Because of this, I have received several message in my inbox that ponder what do in this environment. A couple of the titles were "What you should do in volatile and uncertain markets" and "When market conditions become volatile, how will you react?" The two main strategies that they suggest are 1) stay the course and 2) a diversified portfolio is the best way to be positioned. While this seems sensible in a bull market cycle, these two strategies do not work in a bear market cycle. Therefore, the most important question is not what to do in a volatile market, but is this a bear market?

Portfolio Diversification: A Quick Tip To Do It Better

“Wide diversification is only required when investors do not understand what they are doing.”
 – Warren Buffett

 

 We've all heard the old idiom, "Don't put all your eggs in one basket." For more than five decades, portfolio diversification has been considered a basic building block of any investment portfolio -- with the critical function of reducing risk and dampening volatility. There is a trend toward what may be deemed over-diversification. Should you own a stock in your portfolio to dampen volatility or because of positive underlying fundamentals of a company?

A Lesson from Warren Buffett on Buying Fear Revisited

Last year in February, I wrote a blog post entitled "A lesson from Warren Buffett on buying fear." The S&P 500 was down 5% from its high and the negative headlines focused on slowing global growth and worries about the Fed tapering. If you had bought on that day, you would be up over 20% on your investment!

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Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Runnymede Capital Management, Inc.-"Runnymede"), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Runnymede.  Please remember that if you are a Runnymede client, it remains your responsibility to advise Runnymede, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services, or if you would like to impose, add, or to modify any reasonable restrictions to our investment advisory services. To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing. Runnymede is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of the blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice. A copy of the Runnymede's current written disclosure Brochure discussing our advisory services and fees is available for review upon request. Please Note: Runnymede does not make any representations or warranties as to the accuracy, timeliness, suitability, completeness, or relevance of any information prepared by any unaffiliated third party, whether linked to Runnymede's web site or blog or incorporated herein, and takes no responsibility for any such content. All such information is provided solely for convenience purposes only and all users thereof should be guided accordingly.