Are Grandma and Grandpa Happy Together?

September 17, 2017

Weekly Market Outlook

By Keith Schneider


blankEquity markets continued their spiral up with three of the four key US market indexes hitting new highs. Even better news, is the rally is contagious with foreign equities outperforming, led by Emerging Markets. Cash levels are high globally and allocation to US equities is the lowest in a decade, which is bullish across the board.

The only selloff or hiccup (minor at that) lasted just a few hours and occurred after North Korea launched yet another missile, threatening to level Japan, the US and Guam but not necessarily in that order. North Korea’s recent actions are not surprising after new sanctions were imposed by the UN.

Kim’s response was to extend his middle finger to the UN as he announced his intentions to reach military parity with the US.   After the Trump administration threatened military action, we got a rebuke from both Russia and China about not escalating tensions.

It makes one wonder what either one of them would do under similar circumstances. The takeaway from a trading perspective is that anything short of a nuclear exchange won’t unhinge the markets.

The highlights of the recent global market action are the following:

  • Equity Markets are bullish and our gauges are showing “risk on”. Seasonally we are in the weakest two weeks of the year, so some short-term selling might keep a lid on things for the moment. Emerging (EEM) commodity based markets are hot, led by Brazil.
  • Beaten up sectors like retail (XRT)and energy are bouncing with the leading sector, Semi-conductors once again back on fire, led by NVDA.
  • Value (VTV) stocks, which have been beaten up for over decade, might have bottomed. Cash levels are high and money could start flowing into this theme. Small caps (IWM) or Grandpa (see Mish’s modern family) has also been performing well and merits a closer look as it could become a top performer during the next phase of this old bull market.

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