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Symbol Scales is made of stones of various shapes

Same as it ever was…

Reflationary forces dominated the fixed income market as the second quarter ended. A June rate increase (to a range of 1.00% to 1.25% on Fed Funds) by the Federal Reserve, and a rise to the 2.84% level on the 30-year U.S. Treasury led some market participants to believe the long deflationary spell in the U.S.… Continue reading →

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Risky business

We hate to admit it, but academicians have pretty much overrun the money management business since the late 1960s. A key weapon in their conquest of investor thinking is Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT). First conceived by Harry Markowitz in the 1950s, MPT states that portfolios can be optimized for expected return based on a given… Continue reading →

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The “MAGA” saga

The defining slogan of Donald Trump’s 2016 Presidential campaign was “Make America Great Again” (MAGA).  Presumably he won the election because millions of discouraged voters, particularly those in the Rust Belt, bought into the idea that Mr. Trump could deliver on his MAGA promise. But can he? Does he have a well-defined social, economic and… Continue reading →

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The Fed pushes – bonds push back

On March 15 the Federal Reserve raised short-term interest rates for only the third time in 10 years, to a range of .75 percent to 1.00 percent. With Fed funds futures pricing in a 100 percent probability of an increase prior to the meeting, the Fed had no other option if it wanted to avoid… Continue reading →

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Is this the end of the 30 year bond rally?

The fourth quarter of 2016 was anything but boring in the bond market. The U.S. Federal Reserve continued to play a vital role, ultimately raising short term interest rates for the first time in 2016 in December. However, it was not for the reasons that were expected. With the surprise election of Donald J. Trump… Continue reading →

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