Thursday, October 20, 2016

Thoughts {10.20.16}

Energy stocks had a another great day yesterday and energy is one of the best performing sectors in 2016.  Of course I think it was one of the worst performing groups in 2015.  That's why portfolios should be diversified folks.  We flagged oil, the commodity, as being something to watch back in early February.  Note we are not saying we called a bottom or anything like that.  We just noted back then that investors should put  oil on their watch lists.  No idea where oil goes next but we seem to be in a new trading range on the commodity which makes for easier economics for the energy space.  Energy is slightly overbought by our work right now.  Again I'd note that being overbought or oversold doesn't mean whatever we're talking about can't become further overbought or oversold.

*Long ETFs related to energy companies in client and personal accounts.  Please note these positions can change at any time without notice on this blog or in other printed or electronic media.

Go read over at the Blackrock Blog the article "Let's Retire Retirement".  Retirement is a subject I'm going to talk about in a bit more in the coming weeks and I think this is a good place to start.

We'll have more comments on last night's debate and the overall election next week.  I'd simply note right now that the markets are expecting a significant Clinton victory next month.  Something dramatic, drastic and out of the blue probably has to happen now for that viewpoint to change.  If markets continue to rally on this thinking it is only because Mrs. Clinton will at least have policies that Wall Street currently knows and understands.  Mrs. Clinton is likely to enter office with about the same popularity as Richard Nixon back in 1968.  That is to say her popularity will likely be low.  That will likely affect her political capital irregardless of how she does in the vote.  Remember many who vote for her will do so reluctantly and only because Mr. Trump seen by many is an unpalatable choice.  That will likely not be seen by many in Washington as a broad mandate, at least that's how I interpret this with about a month to go.  In this vein see from Albert Hunt over at Bloomberg, "Maybe Trump Won't Be Clinton's Biggest Problem"

A lot of wonderment on why professional football is in the dumps.  I've said for a long time that if the NFL was a stock I'd short it.  Here are my reasons why I think it's hurting.
1.  Game has become boring.  A lot of mediocre teams.  Last week in Chicago we were treated with the 1-4 Bears playing the 1-3 Jacksonville Jaguars.
2.  Cue in with mediocre teams a lot of mediocre players, especially at the quarterback position.  If you don't have a good quarterback in the modern NFL you have nothing.
3.  Upset fans.  You think the folks in St. Louis are watching football on Sundays this year after the Rams bolted at the end of 2015?  How about the fans in Oakland that are being used again as patsies as the Raiders try to get a new stadium in it seems anyplace but Oakland.  Maybe one of the reasons there's more interest in college football is that the variability of the game and the fact that colleges don't get up and move.  Notre Dame isn't leaving South Bend, nor will the University of Michigan leave Ann Arbor.
4.  Rise of other sports.  See the upswing in the NHL and the English Premier League.
Talking about the NFL won't make you money unless you can figure out an angle on stocks to short on it's weakness but it's an appropriate place to end the week.  This is especially true as our Bears are likely to get served up huge in their game tonight against Green Bay.

Cubs tied their NLCS Series last night at 2-2.  Chicago can now exhale!  Had a pretty rough 24 hours around here the other day after they lost their 2nd straight game without scoring any runs.

Back next week.