renaissance

Taking Stock

Watching for Market Indicators One “indicator” of future stock market performance is the “Super Bowl Indicator.” A New York Times sportswriter created this “indicator” in 1978. It holds that an up market lies ahead for 2014 if the NFC team wins the Super Bowl. There is no...

Taking Stock

After The Streak Ends Stocks stumbled into the New Year, caught their breath and moved back up with the S&P 500 inching above its previous closing high set on December 31. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is still 150 points below it record close at yearend but current...

Taking Stock

Financial Forecasts, Fads & Fashions The New Year invariably inspires financial media commentators to publish their predictions for the next twelve months. The more specific they make them, the less their numbers will match the actual outcomes. The most accurate forecast I’ve...

Taking Stock

The Santa Claus Rally Santa Claus brought early gifts to stock investors when Chairman Bernanke’s farewell report on Federal Reserve policy announced a very gentle program of reducing its program of buying bonds. The Fed even added a sweetener by extending the period before it...

Taking Stock

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town After months of speculation, the Federal Reserve finally announced that it would begin reducing its money-easing program of buying bonds. Rather than any abrupt termination of these popular activities, it will modestly taper its monthly purchases...

Taking Stock

Will There Be A Santa Claus Rally? Retail sales picked up last month, Santa should be coming, the Federal Reserve may soon unleash its “taper” and it’s Friday the Thirteenth. That’s time to play Scrooge and ask if this robust year in the stock market has taken us into a “bubble.”...

Taking Stock

The Federal Reserve Is Coming To Town The economy is expanding at a “modest to moderate” pace, according to a recent announcement by the Federal Reserve. After mixed results earlier this year, there are signs of acceleration in some key sectors. Sales of new homes picked up this...

Taking Stock

Happy Thanksgiving From Wall Street Stocks entered Thanksgiving Week at record levels with the Dow Average through 16,000 and the S&P past 1800. The NASDAQ over-the-counter stock index is also having a good year although it is the ghost at the banquet, still over 20% below...

Taking Stock

Keeping Perspective As predicted last week, stocks easily summoned enough buyers to push the Dow Average through 16,000 and the S&P past 1800. This prompted the usual media attention given to round numbers. After the Federal Reserve released its latest report, the market sold...

Taking Stock

From Shutdown To Surge Only a few weeks ago, political dysfunction shoved the nation to the edge of financial default. The government shutdown was damaging enough but a failure to raise the artificial “debt ceiling” would have led to an unnecessary default on U.S. Treasury bonds....

Taking Stock

Eyes on the Prize Two weeks after a small-minded sect of politicians drove the United States to the brink of default, its stock market hit record levels. This rebound reflects its continued leadership as the world’s largest economy and also on the country’s ability to produce and...

Taking Stock

Relief, Rally Or Reality Rally? Our House of Representatives brought the nation and the global economy to the brink of disaster and passed a stopgap measure with a day or so to spare. The preceding shutdown of the federal government cost the economy billions. Nothing seems to...

Taking Stock

Hitting The Ceiling The nation was forced to the brink a critical crisis, perhaps the most threatening since the Cuban missile crisis in 1962. A small faction in the House of Representatives probably amazed themselves with the potentially destructive power they held. Apparently,...

Taking Stock

Congress Vs. The U.S. Economy Stocks paused for breath after a strong rally, quietly sliding for a week but remaining well ahead for September. Their big rally followed the Federal Reserve’s decision last week to continue its monthly $85 billion stimulus measures. With that issue...

Taking Stock

Where Now, New Dow? Stocks shook off several troubling worries, both foreign and domestic, and powered ahead to a new uptrend, with a strong surge back above 15,000 on the Dow Jones Industrial Average. This famous index of market performance is an old-fashioned arithmetic average...