Blog Archives

An Improving Labor Market and A Fascinating Real Time Experiment

Labor Market Employment

I started getting into the flow and writing about some epiphanies I had on the tennis court that I was planning on sharing this week. And then the jobs report came out on Friday and I saw the reaction of the bond market to what appeared to be a strong report and I felt like I had to do one more chart-oriented blog.

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Keep your Eyes on the Road but Never Lose Sight of the Destination

Interest Rates Keep your Eyes on the Road

Investing has some parallels with driving. It’s important to have a destination that keeps you on course. I think of the destination as financial goals rooted in thoughtful consideration of powerful trends upon which to capitalize such that the wind can be put at your back while also being fully cognizant of what exposures you may have that can lead to a permanent loss of capital based on shorter-term issues arising.

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Sayonara Bonds

Japanese Bond Treasuries

The first quarter was incredibly ugly for bond investors, particularly those with exposure to longer-maturity ones. Bond investors were not happy as Treasuries generated the worst quarterly return since 1980.

A Bad Quarter for Bonds - Bloomberg Barclays treasury index fell 4% 1973 - 2020

So who were the big sellers of Treasuries?

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Stimulus: Should I Save or Should I Go (Spend)

Stimulus save or spend

Economic growth is projected to increase quite substantially now that the $1.9 trillion stimulus has been passed. The following chart shows that economists are forecasting the strongest growth since the Reagan years.

US gross domestic product, change from 4th quarter to 4th quarter 1970 - 2020

Not surprisingly, a lot of this projected growth is predicated on the spending of built-up savings from multiple stimulus packages that have passed and been disbursed.

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A Race Against the Variant(s)

COVID Variants

When it comes to tracking Covid trends there are a few indicators to which I pay close attention. The first is hospitalizations as this is the variable that Governors are most closely watching (as well as ICU capacity) when it comes to implementing restrictions on businesses and personal behavior.

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Lessons from King Lear with a Little Kurt Vonnegut Thrown In

King Lear

“I am a man more sinned against than sinning”

William Shakespeare, King Lear 

Last week’s events made me think about how important it is to understand people’s personality profiles if you are going to be relying on them.

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Feliz Covidad - My End of 2020 Rant!

“Oh what a tangled web we weave.”

-Sir Walter Scott

With 2020 in the rearview mirror, we would all love to put Covid behind us. Unfortunately, the virus doesn’t work on a calendar.

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Learning from 9/11 to Speculate on the Future of Offices

Office air quality

Before action is taken it first must manifest as a thought, however fleeting. And, if actions are part of a more strategic thought process seeking to produce longer-term results, then thoughts are almost always translated into speech and/or writing in order to communicate the thinking and desired outcomes to others who may be necessary or valuable to help bring the desired outcome(s) about.

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Many Pictures Tell a Story - The Fed

This week will be another one focused on charts and graphs that caught my attention. The emphasis will be on the story of the Fed remaining very dovish in spite of what appears to be some pockets of economic strength (e.g. housing, commodities, semiconductors),

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Let's Get Real

COVID19 Vaccine Stimulus Jobs Numbers

The jobs report released on Friday was disappointing. 

Job growth has seriously slowed - economists react to 'disappointing' November employment report December 4, 2020

Disappointing Job Growth

Perhaps the report shouldn’t have been such a surprise on the downside based on this chart.

Meager Bounce for Job Hunting Searches in November 2020 Oct 1, 2019 - Feb 1, 2021

It would appear that job seekers are less confident about their prospects as they have significantly reduced their searches.

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