I’m normally an optimistic, “glass-half-full” kind of guy. I roll my eyes every time I see a headline decrying the next market crash or cataclysmic event that will cripple the global economy. I’m quick to discern speculation from truths and prefer taking the opposite side of most mainstream assumptions.
It’s not that I see everything through rose colored glasses, but rather that I have found an unruffled approach to be a strong foundation for better decision making. Navigating the markets with a calm and calculated strategy produces far superior returns than simply worrying about what dangers might lurk around every corner. Read more
Small cap stocks are traditionally known as centers of growth in the global capital markets. These companies often demonstrate greater risk due to their diminished market footprint. However, they also offer compelling performance and diversification dynamics for investors with a higher risk tolerance.
Most exchange-traded funds that track this segment are focused on broad swaths of the small cap category. They typically own hundreds, if not thousands, of individual stocks with market capitalization’s of less than $2-$3 billion.
The world of exchange-traded funds is filled with heavy weight indexes geared towards a variety of stock selection criteria. The venerable SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) is the largest and most heavily traded of the top ten funds by asset size. SPY is known for its meaningful diversification, tremendous liquidity, and low costs. It’s the benchmark by which nearly every stock-focused strategy is ultimately compared against.
Having a benchmark is important because it allows investors the opportunity to compare similar investment styles to determine if a fund is meeting their expectations. It can easily identify consistent trends that are worthy of greater interest or evasion. One such outlier among the largest U.S. stock ETFs is the pattern of outperformance demonstrated by the PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) over the last decade.
Preferred stocks offer the distinction of being unique hybrid instruments with qualities of both stocks and bonds. In that manner, they offer healthy dividend yields alongside a favored position in the capital structure of many companies that issue these securities.
The reason company’s issue preferred shares are to raise capital from investors that are seeking an attractive yield without adding traditional debt (bonds) that carry strict maturity dates and covenants. Preferred stocks can also be “callable” from the issuer, who has the right to redeem them at a certain price or time at their discretion. Read more
In this month’s video, I look at key trends developing in global stock and bond markets. Chart review includes analysis of large-cap, small cap, emerging market, high yield, interest rates, and gold prices. Observations of risk and reward are noted throughout with an emphasis on caution for new money at this phase of the rally in stocks. Recorded on March 7, 2017.