Current Events

Mike discusses current events and how they could be affecting your investments - or more likely, your perception.

  • Current Events,  Mile High View

    Predictions 2019: The Truth About China

    Recently, China has been causing no end of concern for the American investor. The Trade War that sprung up between the United States and China has caused fluctuations in the market as the talks have gone well or poorly, and, as of this writing, nothing has been resolved. Investors are wary of what could come next. I believe there is a historical model that we can use to understand China’s end goals and the means they may use to get there. At the same time, we have a window into China’s longer-term approach by looking at what China has done in steel production and the impact it has had on…

  • Adams Financial Concepts,  Current Events,  Mile High View

    How Will This Bull Market End?

    How will it end? Will it end in another Great Recession? Will it end with a bout of high inflation? Or will it just continue on and never end? The Great Depression of the 1930s, like the First Great Depression of the 1830s and the long-lasting Depression of the 1870s to early 1900s, was credit-related. During those economically stressful times, bank runs became panics. When a bank was in trouble, individual depositors, fearing the loss of their money, would rush to the banks to demand their money back. When the panic affected only one bank, that institution could sometimes borrow cash from other banks or sell their loans to raise…

  • Current Events,  Mile High View

    Beware!! The Unicorns Are Coming!

    That’s right, the Unicorns are coming. As an article in The Economist[1]pointed out, we use a lot of animal names: bull, bear, dog, hawk, dove, lion, and – in the last few years – unicorn. Unicorns are private companies that are valued at $1 billion or more. Lyft recently came public valued at a $16 billion market cap. Uber has filed and more will follow: Airbnb, We Work, Pinterest, Slack, and a host of Chinese unicorns. I live in Seattle and remember when Microsoft came public. It was a small startup and already profitable, but nothing close to the size of a unicorn. Starbucks had just begun to expand outside…

  • 401ks,  Adams Financial Concepts,  Current Events,  Return on Investment

    A Shocking New Trend

    Last fall, CNN opened an article with the story of Jeff Regan, who received a phone call informing him that his 94-year-old aunt was being evicted from her home in an assisted living facility. The next day, he received legal notice of the eviction.[1] If the number one fear of most people is outliving their money, this is validation. Studies are showing evictions top the list of assisted living grievances. If you google “assisted living evictions” you will find lists of “How to Evict a Resident” and “How to Write the Letter of Eviction – including templates” and “How to Take the Legal Steps to Evict Residents”. It is becoming…

  • Current Events,  Mile High View

    Recession Indicator Flashing Red – Is it time to head to the exits?

    “Dow falls 460 as US Recession Indicator Flashing Red” reads a CNN Headline from last Friday. Is it time to head for the exits? Are we tumbling into a recession? The “bond vigilantes” are out in force waving the caution flags. But could there be another explanation? What is the red flag? The yield on 3-month treasuries is now higher than the yield on the 10 year treasury bond, a condition known as “inverted yield curve”. The yield curve is a graph of interest rates on the vertical axis and the length of time on the horizontal. In the past and inverted yield curve has correctly predicted 9 of the…

  • Current Events,  Mile High View,  Return on Investment

    How Long Will This Secular Bull Last?

    John Templeton, one of the great investors, said of secular bull markets, “Bull markets are born in pessimism, grow on skepticism, mature on optimism and die on euphoria.”   Secular bull markets continue for decades: 1941 to 1966 and 1978 to 2000, for example. I believe it is important to know the “mile high” view and not to get lost in the short term swings. There is no shortage of pundits who predict coming crashes. Andrew Roberts of the Royal Bank of Scotland stated, “Think the unthinkable – the market is going off a cliff”. That was in 2010. That is not unlike James Dale Davidson, who predicted there would…

  • Current Events,  Mile High View

    Impeachment and Investing

    What happens to the markets if President Trump is impeached? It isn’t my intention to give a prediction on if he will or will not be impeached. I am writing this to analyze what would happen if he is impeached, so that you, and your investments, will be prepared in the event. I was an Eagle Scout and the motto is “Be Prepared” – Be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. That is not the purpose of this eletter; this is about the markets, not the merits (or lack-thereof) of impeachment. I do not believe history repeats but that it rhymes. There is no way to know…

  • Current Events,  Return on Investment

    What do WWII Planes and Investment Strategy have in Common?

    What do missing bullet holes in World War II aircraft and investing in today’s market have in common? Let’s begin by explaining the importance of the “missing” bullet holes. When telling stories of war like World War II it is only natural to think of the action, but there were silent thinkers who also contributed. The Statistical Research Group (SRG) was charged with determining how to armor the aircraft to reduce the number of planes shot down by the enemy. With too much armor, the planes were slower and could more easily be shot down, and with too little, the planes could not survive the bullet hits. The SRG began…

  • Current Events,  Mile High View

    2019 Predictions

    One of my favorite quotes is from Yogi Berra: “Predictions are difficult, especially about the future.” Most years I believe that applies. I believe 2019 may be the exception. 2018 started strongly and continued until the end of August, and then not only did the S&P 500 wipe out all the gains but ended down 4.39%. In my opinion nothing characterized that what happened more than December 24 and December 26. On December 24, the DOW Jones 30 plunged 653 points and the next trading day on December 26, the DOW charged upward 1,024 points. What changed in the 36 hours from December 24 to December 26? Nothing. Computer algorithms…

  • Current Events,  Mile High View

    The Impact of Fracking

    The stock market selloff Thanksgiving week 2018 was the worst Thanksgiving week since the 1930s, during Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration. Why this sudden drop in a year of highs? And what impact will we see? In my opinion, the selloff stems from changes in the largest industry in the world. And few people recognize it. The Bush-era tax cuts, the largest ever passed, saved the average family $315 a year. The changes that are taking place now will save the average family $1,750 a year and will probably increase. Oil prices dropped from $76 a barrel to $51, and I expect oil will gradually drop even further. The energy industry…