I was able to finally return to playing some competitive tennis last week. This is something that I was eagerly awaiting. On one of my daily walks ascending the very steep hill near my home I was reflecting on this and how could I best position myself to hit the ground running when I returned to the court.
As states start to open up, economic activity will undoubtedly increase. The S&P 500 is up approximately 26% from its March 23rd low, perhaps suggesting the worst is behind us for now. Of course, the question on everyone’s mind is whether there will be a second wave as more people congregate at work,
Yet again we have witnessed something unprecedented. As the following two charts show, we have never had negative oil prices until last week. Oil has never been cheaper on an inflation-adjusted basis than it is today.
Charlie Munger can be extremely loquacious as he is one who loves to pontificate and definitely has something to say. He also knows when to stay quiet. When he and Warren Buffett hold court at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting and a question is asked of Buffett and after answering it he turns to Charlie and asks him if he has anything to add.
Our extended sheltering in place has naturally led to a lot of time to think and reflect. I’m a big mindset person which reminds me that I have a choice as to how I frame every situation. When I frame situations as challenges and opportunities versus insurmountable problems then I am much more energized and motivated to fight the good battle to come out the other side stronger and wiser.
I’m not one to typically advocate following the herd but in the case of the coronavirus, I am having a hard time seeing an end game that doesn’t have herd immunity as the ultimate goal. And this could take a long time and lead to a lengthier economic contraction (to put it mildly) and even more massive federal intervention through government spending and Federal Reserve support of financial markets.
Last week was a crazy week preparing for rent collections this week as well as going through in great detail the safety precautions we are taking to do our best to keep our employees and residents safe. That is why this blog is shorter than normal.
The title of this blog is from the Talking Heads song Life During Wartime. Maybe I should have called it Life During Quarantine instead but we are definitely on a wartime footing. If you don’t think so then maybe these charts might help convince you as financial markets are the most real-time indicator of investor sentiment and discounting the future to ascertain how investors react to key events.
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