Tag Archives: 2015

Dec 8, 2015

Energy: Fueling a Race to the Bottom

While consumers may enjoy the additional purchasing power provided by a decline in energy prices, Energy sector investors would prefer that they had a little more pain at the pump. The Energy sector of the S&P 500 is having a year to forget. The index is down 20% year to date on a total return…

READ

Oct 28, 2015

Rising Rates’ Silver Linings

Bond values will, definitionally, fall when interest rates rise. However, different types of bonds have differing characteristics. The chart below shows the annual performance of the S&P 500 Bond Index and the S&P/BG Cantor 7-10 US Treasury Bond Index. (The S&P/BG Cantor 7-10 US Treasury Bond Index is the treasury index most similar to the…

READ

Aug 24, 2015

Perseverance and Low Vol

“He conquers who endures.” ~Persius Weak markets tend to make low volatility indices shine. As a strategy that attenuates the performance of the broader market, the S&P 500 Low Volatility Index had lagged the benchmark S&P 500 by 1.22% from the beginning of 2015 thru July 31. As of last Friday, the tide has shifted…

READ

Aug 5, 2015

What Rising Rates Won’t Do

Here is a dramatic chart: It provides a complete history of the trajectory of interest rates over the last sixty years—and also the backdrop for why there’s so much ado about rates today.  It also explains the consensus sentiment that there is only one direction for interest rates to head. We have no desire to enter the pervasive…

READ

Jul 30, 2015

Concentration Consternation

“There are 3 kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.”- Mark Twain Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal pointed out that a mere six stocks (Amazon, Google, Apple, Facebook, Gilead, and Disney) had accounted for more than 100% of the S&P 500’s year-to-date gains.  This degree of concentration (reminding some of the peak…

READ

Jul 21, 2015

ETFs and Hedge Funds: At What Price Performance?

With the final numbers for the second quarter of 2015 now available, the research firm ETFGI today brought some long-anticipated news: the size of the exchange traded funds market has finally exceeded that of its older, more well-to-do cousins.  It may have taken a little longer than we expected, but ETFs are now a bigger…

READ

Jun 16, 2015

A Curious Incident

“Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?” “To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.” “The dog did nothing in the night-time.” “That was the curious incident,” remarked Sherlock Holmes. Arthur Conan Doyle, “Silver Blaze” (1892) Sometimes, as Holmes appreciated, what is missing is as interesting as…

READ

Jun 11, 2015

The Smarter Investor

Investors have spoken: There is a world outside of traditional indexing, and they want in. “Smart beta” or factor indices bridge the gap between active and passive management by allowing investors to tilt toward specific investment attributes – for example, low volatility or high dividend yield.  These indices use factors in a rules-based, transparent manner…

READ

Jun 2, 2015

Will Greece Default, And Does It Matter?

Once again, Europe’s banking and finance chiefs are hunkered around the negotiating table. The Greek prime minister is optimistic a deal can be reached, the German finance minister dismissive. A debt payment is due; it is two minutes to midnight.  The markets are hanging by a thread on the outcome. Writing the news is getting…

READ

Apr 9, 2015

When Did Everyone Get so Sick?

While the government squabbles over the future of healthcare, healthcare company executives can just sit back and smile.  Their investors can too. In the U.S., the healthcare sector significantly outperformed broad parent indices in the first quarter 2015, across capitalization ranges.  On a total return basis, the S&P 500® Health Care sector index gained 6.5%…

READ


Get Indexology® Blog updates via email.