Daily Talk

Focusing on Jobs and Wages

June 2, 2017

The Dow Jones Industrial Average joined the other major equity indices in kicking off June by surging to new all-time highs. And more broadly, we saw the buying spread to heretofore unloved sectors and individual names. Financials have been a major disappointment, but they outperformed yesterday. Even with today’s disappointing report – more on that in a moment – I continue to base a large part of my investment thesis on job and wage improvement.

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America Is Eating Out Again

May 30, 2017

I recently watched The Founder, the movie about how Ray Kroc took – although some might say stole – a brilliant restaurant idea from the McDonald brothers and grew it into a global juggernaut. The movie pointed to the halcyon days when Americans began eating out as a reflection of good times and prosperity. We definitely aren’t as giddy about fast food anymore, but eating out is making a resurgence. The good news is that there are ways for investors to cash in on the trend.

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Payne’s Passion: Where True Freedom Begins

May 26, 2017

Despite the howls from the left, I think Dr. Ben Carson is spot on… I’ve seen it first-hand. And I think it brings up a point worth remembering this Memorial Day weekend as we honor those who lost their lives defending America. Growing up, I saw glimpses of poverty when I visited the South. Amid the poverty, I mostly saw upbeat folks who worked hard and who looked forward to things getting better. You can despise your situation but you need to resolve to get out of it.

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AMZN Is In for a Pullback

May 23, 2017

Amazon (AMZN) has traded well so far in 2017, and while the retail space has been under pressure for much of this year, we’re nowhere near the end of this company’s success. But despite its strength, there’s no question this stock can be volatile from time to time, and given its spectacular performance over the years I do have concerns about a near-term pullback due to a variety of issues, including valuation and a recent decline in earnings consensus.

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Beneath the Headlines: U.S. Household Debt

May 19, 2017

Whenever the market rips higher or plunges, the important thing to keep in mind is that there are other stories out there beyond the headlines. Wednesday it was the bank sell-off, particularly in large money center banks that dragged their smaller counterparts along for the ride. Then there are the headlines that U.S. household debt has eclipsed the peak that precipitated the Great Recession. In fact, I see some positives that I want to talk about today.

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Lessons from the Comeback Kids

May 12, 2017

This week saw new records on the NASDAQ, paced by those juggernaut technology companies that have become unstoppable. These are the halcyon days for tech as doubters seem to fade into the background, and everyone is jumping on the bandwagon. Netflix (NFLX) is one of those names that has always been under the gun and facing a high degree of doubt. Wednesday, it closed at an all-time high. Then there’s NVIDIA (NVDA), which took more than 15 years to get its act together and live up to the early hype.

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4 Tech Juggernauts That Are the New “Nifty 50”

May 7, 2017

The modern day juggernauts of the technology space have been unstoppable recently, and that has many investing historians and purists worried. Most investors are familiar with the tech and telecom crash that began in 2000 and totally collapsed in 2001. Ironically, many of the second-tier tech names driving the current sector rally were the key players back then as well. So are we set up to experience a similar crash? No. Let me tell you why.

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Small Business to the Rescue

May 5, 2017

I had been looking for a huge jump in the April jobs report, and after not hitting the mark in March, we finally got what we were looking for. This morning’s report was good overall, but today I want to talk focus on jobs related to small businesses. Investors tend to look at on the biggest or the fastest growing companies. However, what many don’t realize is that neither these companies nor our economy can grow without the engine of small businesses.

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Three Proxies of the Global Environment

May 2, 2017

Last week I tweeted about what I called “globalist stocks” leading Monday’s rally. I have to say I was being a little tongue-in-cheek considering the fact that the current political atmosphere believes all the countries in the world could put up walls and not trade with each other — which, I might add, is very unrealistic. That being said, there is a stark difference between economic interactions and the goal of a “One World Government.”

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Is the GDP Spiral a Concern?

April 28, 2017

In addition to companies reporting how they did in the first quarter, we also got our first glimpse of how the economy overall fared. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is important all of the time, but especially now as the Fed is looking to continue raising interest rates. There has to be evidence the economy can handle higher rates. The initial reading for came in at just 0.7% growth today.

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