Market Commentary

  • March 28, 2016

    The Markets Stimulate the markets with more monetary easing was the tune from Europe recently and most markets gained ground. The harmony provided by global oil markets proved pleasing to investors, too. An International Energy Agency (IEA) report suggested more equitable supply and demand balances could mean oil prices have bottomed out. I continue to […]

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  • February 15, 2016

            The Markets There was bad news and good news in last Friday’s unemployment report. In the negative column, fewer jobs were created in the United States than economists had predicted, and January’s jobs gains were not as strong as December’s had been. In addition, the December jobs increase was revised downward […]

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  • January 31, 2016

    The Markets Investors breathed a sigh of relief last week when U.S. stock markets recovered from a tumble toward bear market territory. Going back in time 12 months it is interesting to see the returns of the various indices. The S&P 500 has been -7.6%, the Dow Jones has been -15.4%, gold has been -15.4% and commodities have been […]

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  • November 1, 2015

    The Markets Central banks were at it again – and markets loved it. Last week, European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi surprised markets when he indicated the ECB’s governing council was considering cutting interest rates and engaging in another round of quantitative easing. The Economist explained European monetary policy was heavily tilted toward growth […]

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  • August 31, 2015

    The Markets U.S. stock markets finished last week higher than they started it, but the five-day ride was awfully bumpy. Concerns about China’s slowing growth, shifting currency valuations, and falling stock markets, coupled with uncertainty about the Federal Reserve’s next policy move, contributed to malaise in world markets early last week. After falling by about […]

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  • May 18, 2015

    The Markets The U.S. Treasury market is a bit like a lake in the midst of a drought. All the action – fish, frogs, crawdads, and such – that was once hidden in the depths has become a lot more visible as the water shallows. For decades, traders and investors have turned to U.S. government […]

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  • April 20, 2015

    The Markets It’s a topsy-turvy world. In the United States, during the last quarter of 2014, about seven million (13 percent) of all mortgaged residential properties were underwater, meaning the mortgage loan amount was at least 25 percent higher than the estimated market value of the property, according to That’s a significantly lower number […]

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  • April 13, 2015

    The Markets How much is one trillion? If you waited one trillion seconds, it would take 31,688 years. If you had a trillion dollars, and spent $10 million a day, it would take 273 years to go broke. If you taped $100 bills end-to-end, you could wrap the earth 41 times with $1 trillion dollars. […]

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  • March 9, 2015

    The Markets Last week was one of those weeks: When good news triggered not-so-good news. According to Barron’s: “The February jobs report, showing a 295,000 gain in nonfarm payrolls, about 60,000 more than predicted by economists, plus a dip in the unemployment rate to 5.5 percent evidently was enough to convince the markets that a […]

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  • March 3, 2015

    The Markets It was an Alice in Wonderland week. European countries, companies, and entrepreneurs were getting paid to borrow money, and ordinary Joes with money in some European banks got letters saying the banks would be charging to hold their money. The New York Times reported: “The most profound changes are taking place in Europe’s […]

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