Monday, June 26, 2023

Morning Note: Choose Your Adjective

 Here's your weekly, sector, regional, and asset class results update:

Be very wary of the pundit who would proclaim that equity investors are out of the woods, and that a new bull market has indeed emerged... 

A legitimate, objective view of the above striking divergences among US sectors (5 up, 6 down on the year), regions, etc., can, frankly, by itself, only have the (objective) viewer labeling current conditions as, let's say uncertain, precarious, risky -- choose your adjective... 

Anyone declaring anything but —at this juncture—is either exceedingly lazy with their analysis, a hopeless hopeium addict, or, alas, somehow paid to pump stocks... Not that they won't turn out to be right -- indeed, the bear market may in fact have ended last October -- it's just that to declare victory, amid the mess highlighted above, is, well, too akin to the antics we all-too-often witness on the geopolitical stage as well.

Asian stocks were mostly red overnight, with 13 of the 16 markets we track closing lower.

Same for Europe so far this morning, with 14 of the 19 bourses we follow trading down as I type.

US equity averages are up slightly to start the session: Dow by 8 points (0.02%), SP500 up 0.07%, SP500 Equal Weight up 0.29%, Nasdaq 100 up 0.09%, Nasdaq Comp up 0.12, Russell 2000 up 0.64%.

As for last Friday’s session, US equity averages closed lower: Dow by 0.6%, SP500 down 0.8%, SP500 Equal Weight down 0.9%, Nasdaq 100 down 1.0%, Nasdaq Comp down 1.0%, Russell 2000 down 1.4%.

This morning the VIX sits at 13.91, up 3.50%.

Oil futures are up 0.38%, gold's up 0.19%, silver's up 0.94%, copper futures are down 0.26% and the ag complex (DBA) is up 0.79%.

The 10-year treasury is up (yield down) and the dollar is down 0.16%.

Among our 34 core positions (excluding options hedges, cash and money market funds), 23 -- led by Albemarle, OIH (oil services stocks), XLE (energy stocks), XME (metals miners) and SLV (silver) -- are in the green so far this morning... The losers are being led lower by ITA (defense stocks), DBB (base metals futures), Johnson & Johnson, XLV (healthcare stocks) and XLP (staples stocks).

"Good investors focus on risk. Risk is the downside. Bernard Baruch said it well when he said nobody ever went broke taking a profit. Those who focus on containment ultimately have a greater percentage of succeeding. My own orientation is that if I wanted to be an investor today, I would be an observer. I’d study. I’d think. I’d see. But I’d ultimately look at the world and say, “What could go wrong?” And deal with that rather than take a positive attitude and get disappointed or be unprepared." 
--Sam Zell

Have a great day!

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