Draining the Lifeblood of the Economy | Weekly Market Commentary | April 24, 2023
Investors use various analogies to describe the importance of small businesses in the domestic economy. Some refer to the small business sector as the backbone or the lifeblood of the economy. At this current stage of the cycle, we could say there are rising risks of an acute backache or a draining of that lifeblood. In this edition of the Weekly Market Commentary, we discuss the weakness in small businesses and what that foreshadows in the markets and the economy.
A Closer Look at Commercial Real Estate | Weekly Market Commentary | April 17, 2023
The commercial real estate (CRE) market has recently captured the spotlight after being flagged as the next potential shoe to drop following last month’s banking turmoil. While rising rates have weighed on financing costs and the recent bank failures will make lending more restrictive, the post-pandemic world has produced structural changes that will likely weigh on the sector, especially within the retail and office segments. Banks, especially smaller cap regionals, are most exposed to CRE if credit cracks continue to widen.
Earnings Preview-Malaise Continues | Weekly Market Commentary | April 10, 2023
First quarter earnings season kicks off this week with some big banks reporting toward the end of the week. In some ways this quarter’s earnings season will probably be déjà vu all over again— earnings declines and cautious guidance, reductions in estimates, but better than feared. However, tightened financial conditions in the wake of last month’s banking turmoil and building evidence for a slowing economy has changed the economic backdrop this quarter. It will be interesting to see how management teams react to these latest developments.
Who is Right, Fed or Markets? | Weekly Market Commentary | April 3, 2023
Financial markets and the Federal Reserve are reading from two different playbooks. Who is right? The markets are pricing in several rate cuts by the end of this year, while the Federal Reserve communicated more rate hikes with an expectation of holding rates up throughout the balance of 2023. We think that markets have it right, but several factors need to play out for this outcome to prevail. If growth stalls and inflation materially slows, the Fed could cut yet keep real rates positive. Read more below for our reasoning and for what it means for your investments.
The 36-Hour SVB Collapse and Hierarchy of Blame | Weekly Market Commentary | March 27, 2023
A lot has changed in the past few weeks, both in terms of expectations for interest rates and lost confidence in the health of the banking system as a result of the sharp rise in interest rates that has led to some things “breaking,” as we wrote about here last week. Here we share some thoughts on who’s to blame for the ongoing banking crisis and reiterate how we are telling investors to adjust, or not adjust, their asset allocations in light of ongoing market volatility.