Coaster brakes

Back in September, the U.S. Federal Reserve announced that their massive bond-buying program known as Quantitative Easing (QE) would begin to be reversed on October 1st, 2017. Given this momentous occasion (at least for bond nerds like us), we thought it would be useful to summarize, in laymen’s terms, the…

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…

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…

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…

Trump takes over

On January 20, Donald J. Trump became the 45th President of the United States, and we’re all wondering what “The World According to Trump” will look like. Given his penchant for late-night Twitter eruptions and policy head fakes, no one knows if the President-elect is serious about bringing fundamental change…

Push me pull you

The tug of war in US interest rates continued in the third quarter of 2016. The US economy showed some strength on the employment front that pushed rates up, but these forces were offset by Federal Reserve Bank Governors jawboning rates back down. Weak foreign economic news also depressed US…

The 2% solution

The US economy can’t get out of its own way. Seven years of sub 3 percent economic growth have discouraged millions of middle and working-class families and deferred the dreams of the millennial generation. This (seemingly endless) saga of lingering debt, stagnant wages and jarring income  inequality has flummoxed economic…