Monday, February 12, 2024

Morning Note: "Consumer Reality Tour" -- And Your Weekly Results Update

BCA chief strategist Peter Berezin was not in the heavily-crowded recession camp last year... He estimated -- correctly! -- that, despite the plethora of leading indicators screaming otherwise, the consumer's momentum and resources would keep the economy chugging along throughout 2023.

Per the below, his 2024 analysis paints an altogether different picture:


Stay tuned... 

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

Asian equities leaned green overnight, with 9 of the 16 markets we track closing higher.

Europe's mostly green so far this morning, with 12 of the 19 bourses we follow trading up as I type.

US equity averages are, save for the Russell, flat to start the session: Dow down 10 points (0.03%), SP500 up 0.01, SP500 Equal Weight up 0.10%, Nasdaq 100 up 0.05%, Nasdaq Comp up 0.10%, Russell 2000 up 0.67%.

This morning the VIX sits at 13.43.

Oil futures are down 0.47%, nat gas futures are down 0.54%, gold's down 0.37%, silver's up 0.04, copper futures are up 0.39% and the ag complex (DBA) is down 0.05%.

The 10-year treasury is up (yield down) and the dollar is up 0.07%.

Among our 33 core positions (excluding options hedges, cash and money market funds), 25 -- led by Dutch Bros, EIDO (Indonesia equities), XLE (energy stocks), EWM (Malaysia equities) and VWO (emerging mkt equities) -- are in the green so far this morning... The losers are being led lower by GLD (gold), EWU (UK equities), SLV (silver), XLK (tech stocks) and XLV (healthcare stocks).

Be careful out there:
"The public proves easy pickings for the blandishments of the heroic, charismatic promoters. Competent investing requires a rare combination of mathematical ability, technological expertise, and, most critically, a working knowledge of economic history. Alas, people greatly prefer stories to data and facts; when faced with such a daunting task, humans default into narrative mode, and perhaps the most pleasing story of all is one that involves the effortless wealth to be had from buying into a new technology."

"The narrative arc of financial manias does not vary much either. Most speculative episodes combine two factors: exciting new technologies that foretell prosperity for all, and easy credit." 

--William Bernstein, The Delusions of Crowds: Why People Go Mad in Groups 

Have a great day!

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