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The stock, bond, and housing markets are in pretty real distress right now as higher rates re-price risk assets, and general instability in monetary policy becomes the natural consequence of years of excess and irresponsibility. And yet, everyone is already talking about it, making it a far less compelling candidate for this week’s Dividend Cafe. I have covered plenty on monetary policy this year and it will remain a primary macroeconomic focus in my shop for years to come. And as far as the general equity market distress playing out, I do think a general primer on bear markets next week will be useful (I have already begun writing it in my head). But this week, I believe we are due for a topic that may be more dramatic than even stock market volatility, inflation, or Fed breakage. I think that through the lenses we normally think about various international affairs, particularly as it pertains to countries we consider enemies of the United States, we are missing some economic and market-sensitive ramifications that will be important to better understand. So grab your globe but not your passport, and let’s devote this week’s Dividend Cafe to a few matters of international significance. I confess up front that it may not all cheer you up, but I can promise you this: It is not going to be the standard level of depth you are often exposed to. Let’s dive deeper, and jump in, to the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
The market really doesn’t want to close strong these days, going from +100 to -100 in the last ten minutes of trading today. MARKET ACTION Dow: -107 points (-0.35%) S&P: -0.84% Nasdaq: -1.37% 10-Year Treasury Yield: 3.71% (+20 basis points!) Top-performing sector: Health Care (+0.51%) Bottom-performing sector: Consumer Discretionary (-2.16%); now down -27% on the year, just 1% away from the down -28% of Technology but not nearly as bad as -36% Communication Services WTI Crude Oil: $83.45/barrel (+0.60%) Key Economic Points of the Day: The Bank of Japan left their policy rate unchanged (as expected) Initial jobless claims came in again at just 213,000, and last week, it was revised down to 208,000. The four-week average is now the lowest since early June. Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
I’d love to say “Fed comments caused the market to drop today” but it would be untrue. Within seconds of the Fed release the market went from +200 to -200, but then the market went back to +250, and that was all AFTER the Fed announcement, the release, and the Powell press conference. THEN, after all that, the market unraveled into the final thirty minutes of trading. Dow: -522 points (-1.70%) S&P: (-1.71%) Nasdaq: (-1.79%) 10-Year Treasury Yield: 3.53% (-4 basis points) Top-performing sector: Consumer Staples (-0.34%) Bottom-performing sector: Consumer Discretionary (-2.37%) WTI Crude Oil: $83.04/barrel (+0.12%) Key Economic Point of the Day: Existing home sales dropped -0.4% in August and are down -19.9% from a year ago Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
A volatile day to the downside in markets today as traders await comments from the Fed tomorrow and as bond yields bring down risk asset valuation. Dow: -313 points (-1.01%) S&P: -1.13% Nasdaq: -0.95% 10-Year Treasury Yield: 3.56% (+7 basis points) Top-performing sector: Technology (-0.51%) Bottom-performing sector: Real Estate (-2.57%) WTI Crude Oil: $84.16/barrel (-1.38%) Key Economic Point of the Day: Housing starts came in at 1.575 million annualized for the month of August, a whopping 125k above expectations. Nearly all of the excess vs. expectations were in multi-family, with single-family coming in the second lowest since mid-2020. Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
It is not accidental that I write so much about the Energy sector. First and most applicable, we are big energy investors at The Bahnsen Group, carrying an allocation in our Core Dividend portfolio that is triple the weight that the S&P 500 has. What is happening in energy markets has profound relevance for the economy at large, for all people in their everyday lives, and across all national borders. Few things are more globally relevant than access to energy. But if I am being totally honest, even apart from the large financial exposure we have to the energy space, I love this subject because energy fascinates me. It should fascinate anyone who spends just sixty seconds thinking about the fact that natural resources around for thousands of years with almost no known utility have created a more significant increase in the quality of life for more people than anything under the sun. “Transformed energy” sits at the heart of all economic activity, as my friend Louis Gave is fond of saying. You cannot destroy energy, which is both a law of the universe most of us learned in elementary school and, these days, apparently a vital message for investors. In the physical universe, it merely means energy is constantly changing – usually for the purpose of doing work – but in the investing world, I believe it means something different but perhaps not entirely disconnected. So let’s do a little autumn analysis of the energy sector, where we are, where we may be going, and see what may edify us in the discussion. Let’s jump into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
Special thanks to all who have reached out to say how much they like and appreciate the new format. Between the addition of a podcast, a video, a transcription of the podcast, and the continuation of a daily written synopsis, along with the legacy version on Monday and the real meat of Dividend Cafe on Friday, I think the vast majority of readers have been extremely positive in their feedback. Ironically, the one or two nasty emails we got (you should see the stuff my communications team receives sometimes) were not even from clients, soooooo …. I do recognize that sometimes people like routine and familiarity (I am one of them), but change is part of life, and these changes were done to add mediums that are most popular and sought after, and to harmonize the workload with the reality of someone who has worked 16-18 hours per day for 25 years. Beyond that, I’m pretty much done talking about it … Okay – off we go! MARKET ACTION Dow: -173 points (-0.56%) S&P: (-1.13%) Nasdaq: (-1.43%) 10-Year Treasury Yield: 3.45% (+3.7 basis points) Top-performing sector: Health Care (+0.55%) Bottom-performing sector: Energy (-2.54%) WTI Crude Oil: $85.30/barrel (-3.62%) Key Economic Point of the Day: Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
The day after the market sell-off you had a small move higher in each equity index but I unpack it all and then some here … MARKET ACTION Dow: +30 points (+0.10%) S&P: +0.34% Nasdaq: +0.74% 10-Year Treasury Yield: 3.41% (- 1 basis point) Top-performing sector: Energy (+2.85%) Bottom-performing sector: Real Estate (-1.39%) WTI Crude Oil: $88.68/barrel (+1.57%) Key Economic Point of the Day: Even as the Consumer Price Index came in a bit higher than expected yesterday, the Producer Price Index dropped -0.1% in August (consensus was for no change) ASK DAVID “When you refer to the futures market predicting a 88% chance of a 75bp rate hike or whatever the percentage and outcome may be, how is that determined?” ~ Don D. The CME (Chicago Mercantile Exchange) makes a market in fed funds rate futures. Real people using real money to buy real futures contracts on what the real rate may be at real future intervals. This futures market is the gold standard of measuring market expectations around the fed funds rate. ON DECK I will be on set co-hosting for an hour tomorrow with Stuart Varney (9am-10am ET) on Fox Business. CHECK OUT I was on set with Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business early this morning talking energy, inflation, markets, growth, and more. A worthwhile interview! Links mentioned in this episode: TheDCToday.com DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
The Consumer Price Index (Headline CPI) came in +8.3% over where it was a year ago. Core CPI (which excludes food and energy) came in at +6.3% versus a year ago. Food prices and the lagging effect of shelter cost put upward pressure on prices while energy prices and used cars put downward pressure on prices. TheDCToday.com DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
It’s pretty anti-climactic that I announce the new DC Today plans on Thursday and then we get to Monday and … it’s the same DC Today you are used to … But that is the idea – no difference in the written program for DC Today on Monday, but with the addition of this daily podcast (and video) … TheDCToday.com DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
I first want to thank everyone for the extremely positive feedback last week on the somewhat unique Dividend Cafe juxtaposing USC football and markets. It was fun to write and, at least for some of you, appears to have been fun to read. But for those who prefer the serious stuff, we are back to normal this week, and I think it is time I cover a topic that comes up a lot anecdotally, but I don’t think has ever received headline treatment in the Dividend Cafe. And yet, it is one of the single most important topics in the field of economics and finance … I refer to currencies, the U.S. dollar in particular, but really the overall global dynamics of currency and what it all means to investors. Currency ramifications impact all investors all the time, yet we rarely contemplate why or how. Today I want to play around a bit with some aspects of this critical topic in the present reality. Jump on into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
When Markets Fight On!

When Markets Fight On!

2022-09-0227:38

Why in the world would I waste the precious soundwaves of Dividend Cafe to recap day-by-day market action when this hallowed ground is supposed to be reserved for what actually matters in markets (and life)?  Because we are entering football season, of course, and how this all connects is about to be readily apparent to you. DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
Long-time readers of Dividend Cafe know that the real intent of this weekly commentary is to delve into the macroeconomic – the big picture – the high-level stuff that impacts investor decisions and behavior. Today in honor of the obsession over Jerome Powell’s speech at Jackson Hole (being delivered shortly after I hit “submit” on this commentary), I want to talk not an iota about the Fed, monetary policy, or really any aspect of macroeconomics. Rather, I want to actually dive into a question that is hyper-practical – more micro than macro – and that is when to sell a stock. I was in the process of answering a question about this topic for the Ask David section of The DC Today when I realized it really warranted the full Dividend Cafe treatment. So here we are – a Fed-free Dividend Cafe dedicated to the ever-practical issue of sell discipline. We’ll discuss Jackson Hole in Monday’s DC Today (only because I have to), but for today let’s talk about how dividend growth equity investors like ourselves think about the right time to sell a stock. Let’s jump into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
We have a fun Dividend Cafe for you this week, with by far the most important things on my mind in the summer of 2022 getting all of the attention. This is a short, easy read, and easily digestible for anyone looking to make heads or tails of the current market conditions. I will spare you further introduction and jump right into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
I kind of like this week's Dividend Cafe.  We are going to do a very quick look into how the Fed fuels Japanification, but more specifically, how low-interest rates hurt growth.  It is one thing (and a more severe one at that) that monetary policymakers generally view artificially low rates as a really good thing to fuel economic growth, but at this stage in my life and career, there is little I can do about that.  It is another thing altogether that so many investors think is a great thing.  Today I want to do a quick lesson on why it is not just wrong but a dangerous fallacy, that is, wait for it, undermining economic growth. Speaking of growth, many want to know when the Emerging Markets will deliver it.  I think you will benefit from that lesson today as well.  Unfortunately, the EM gain is likely to be Europe's pain, so get ready for a case of hot-cold. And finally, I want to add to last week's talk about "gross domestic product" in how we think about economic growth.  You may find it illuminating. Jump on into the Dividend Cafe. Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
One of the hardest things about being an economic commentator in this day and age is that economic commentary requires nuance, and this day and age requires narratives.  There is to be a single narrative about X, and any variation around, above, beneath, or of the exact X narrative is heretical or at least unappreciated. It is a tough way for society to function, but it is an especially tough way to do economic analysis. I do not merely refer to the inevitable complexity involved in topics like these that are, well, complex.  You are smart readers, and I do my very best (sometimes better than others) to make complex topics a bit more comprehensible in my writing and speaking.  Readers and listeners can judge how effective I am there, but I do try.  No, this is not about complexity, but nuance, which basically can be quite simple at times; it is just that it doesn't fit into the script of a narrative.  It isn't binary.  The nuances of proper economic analysis aren't always fit for a forced narrative. Such is the moment we are in, and today I want to answer your questions about the state of the economy.  If I do my job right, everyone will be mad at me when all is said and done (I should fail at landing in either of the primary narratives of the day).  Such is the plight of an economic truth-teller in 2022 ... Jump on into the Dividend Cafe! Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
I really did mean to write this entire piece last week but simply ran out of time and space. I will give you a recap today of last week’s takeaways but then make sure this week’s wraps a bow around our updated point of view on inflation. This is not merely a philosophical exercise. There is an abundance of empirical support provided for my position, and I think you will find a lot of the information about the present state of affairs surprising. You may draw a different conclusion on the matter than I do, but my conclusions on what this means for the decade ahead have profound implications for citizens and investors alike. Again, this can’t be armchair stuff for a real asset allocator; this is what we call fiduciary responsibility. So grab a cup of coffee and get comfortable. This is one of those truly Dividend Cafe editions. Jump on in… Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
It has been a year and a half since I first took up the inflation/deflation debate as a matter of contemporary debate (a part 1 and a part 2). As much as I wished then (and now) that the great economic fight we would have for the next thirty years was inflation, I believed then (and now) that the great economic fight we will have for the next thirty years is better referred to as deflation (a term that itself will require more precise explanation. Some more in-depth updates on the subject have also been produced with a deep desire to really explain and contextualize the state of affairs. Nevertheless, the responsibility of clarity in messaging is with the writer, not the reader, and while there is only so much I can do to make sure those reading it understand it, I have a pretty strong desire to keep doing more. Let me just leave the introduction there and dive into this topic. I suppose I do hope some clarification comes out of this, but truth be told, I am more passionate about just reiterating the great economic message of our time. My agenda is not academic, and it is not political. I am responsible for actual client capital, which is to say, the instrumentation by which actual human goals and needs are met. I take it very, very seriously. And this subject sits at the center of what I believe is a generational economic challenge. Let’s jump into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
A Fool's Game

A Fool's Game

2022-07-1519:34

I send this week’s Dividend Cafe at the end of a 24-hour trip to Las Vegas, where I spoke at a conference yesterday. 2,600 people have come to the 110-degree city of sin for the purpose of hearing various economic and political musings, and one such forum of musings was a panel with myself, Steve Forbes, George Gilder, and Mark Skousen discussing, of all things, my book! It was a surreal experience to be next to Gilder, whose Wealth and Poverty was a transformative book in my intellectual development as a pretty darn young guy (you would actually think less of me if you knew how young I was when I read it). Anyways, by the time you read this, I will be on a plane back to New York City Friday afternoon, where I will be working all of next week before returning to Newport Beach next weekend. We are living in a time where there have been more bad ideas than money to invest in (or at least bad prices at which to buy those ideas). Soon we will see more money than people acting on bad ideas. But right now, a little parsing out of what the laws of contrarian investing mean is in order, and I think you will find it fascinating. Jump on into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
The fundamental tension in the economy today, and less directly so, in markets themselves, is really simple: Is a recession coming that slows down price inflation? That question is simple to identify as the economic tension point of the moment, but it is not simple to answer. One reason for this complexity is that some of the premises brought to the question are not to be taken for granted. And this is the subject of today’s Dividend Cafe – what do we know about current economic conditions, potential economic developments, and eventual economic results? What do some think they know that could be wrong? And what is an investor to do through all of this? I have some thoughts to share that can hopefully bring clarity to much of this, and some of those thoughts are merely clarifying, while others may be non-consensus views. Either way, convictions run deep at The Bahnsen Group, as does humility. That is another “tension” that we hold gladly. Let’s jump into the Dividend Cafe … Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
Happy Independence Day weekend to you and yours. Or for those without much historical interest, Happy Fourth of July. Today’s Dividend Cafe is not going to dive into the state of the market, though I can promise you that Tuesday’s DC Today will have plenty to say about the first half of 2022 and our expectations for the second half. But for today, I want to look at this Independence Day holiday that we celebrate in our country, and analyze what the Fourth of July has to do with markets and economics. I make no bones out of the fact that I love my country, and much have that has to do with understanding what this country is – an idea, and an exceptional idea, at that. How the exceptional idea of America ties into markets, economics, and investing, is where we are going in today’s Dividend Cafe. Jump on in – there will be time enough for BBQ and sun this weekend. Links mentioned in this episode: DividendCafe.com TheBahnsenGroup.com
Comments (8)

Scott Mericle

After hearing David on The World and Everything In It, I decided to Google him and came across some great additional sources to hear him... including this gem of a podcast!

Aug 28th
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Jonathan Grossman

David's logical brillance makes all of his afternoon missives easy to listen to and understand. On a personal note David's commentary gives me confidence as a client of the Bahnsen Group.

Aug 1st
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stinky rex

great breakdown of the situation in simple layman terms. always come out feeling better about things after listening to David.

Apr 28th
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stinky rex

came to this podcast via Radio Free California. awesome commentary, makes complicated stuff seem simple.

Nov 26th
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CAFEtech Los Angeles

Best podcast on economic and financial matters that I have yet discovered.

Sep 13th
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Moises Perez

Amazing podcast. I suggest you market this podcast more. Ive been looking for a informative podcast on the markets and found this podcast on my last try.

Jul 28th
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