As we noted in last weeks letter, the equity markets looked locked and loaded to test their crucial supports and they did just that. The SP500 tested the 2550 level and the Nasdaq the all-important 6495 level, both markets saw minor follow through. All eyes are dependent upon what the FED does on Wednesday as the markets still see around a 68% chance of another 25bp hike. We read in the WSJ on Monday an Op-ed from Stan Drunkenmiller and Kevin Warsh and it can be summed up via this quote, “the central bank should pause its double-barreled blitz of higher interest rates and tighter liquidity.” As much as we respect the both of them, we disagree whole heartedly.
This is going to be a quick note with some charts due to the Thanksgiving holiday week. We continue to see bounces being sold into in terms of the equity markets. Our readers have been well informed of our sentiment and despite expecting this to continue, we do expect some bounces to occur now and then. The larger global macro theme hinges on the FEDs continued hikes and deteriorating global cohesion theme.
This week’s note will begin by reiterating our bullish theme on the Natural Gas market. We have been clamoring for weeks about both the technical and fundamental backdrop that continues to underpin this Bull Run.
Its kind of amazing how at certain points in time, things happen and they tend to be a wake up call – that is if we just open our ears and listen. We have talked at length about our disdain for the likes of the big investment houses and their pitching of zero fee fund management products.
The FOMC decided to raise rates another 25bp to a high mark range of 2.25%. We applaud the continued move; however, we feel that we could be doing more and doing it faster. Holding interest rates or real rates still negative, some 10 years after the 2008 crisis is deeply concerning. All too often people focus on the Fed Funds rate, but the real rate, the FF less inflation, is still negative. Rates are still very accommodative...although the FED left that word out of the statement today. Watching Powell is like watching your Accounting professor discuss reconciling the balance sheet on a late spring afternoon. He and the FED continue to use words like transitory, gradual and appropriate, a decade into a recovery and we are still using these words. The dot plots are all calling for continued hikes peaking around 3.25/3.65%. We view this as highly opportunistic and we do not think the global economy nor the domestic economy will be able to absorb such a short rate given the sheer size of global debt growth. For those that haven’t seen, we often use our own “dot plot” picture: