The Capital Spectator has left the building. So long to 2020, and good riddance. We’ll be back in the new year, starting with Best of Book Bits 2020: Part II on Saturday, Jan 2, followed by the resumption of the usual routine on Monday, January 4. Meantime, best wishes to our readers for 2021! Our model-free
forecast assumption: relief is coming.
Designing and managing portfolios that maximize diversification is challenging in the best of circumstances. In the wake of this year’s coronavirus pandemic, the task has become even tougher.
* House passes bill to raise stimulus checks to $2,000
* Debate over $2,000 Covid-19 aid checks shifts to Senate
* House overrides Trump’s veto of a $740.5 billion defense policy bill
* New York lawmakers pass bill that bans most evictions
* Manufacturing activity expanded for 7th month in Texas in December
* US stock market (S&P 500) jumped to record high on Monday:
The year’s penultimate trading week was short but it didn’t lack for drama. A broadly defined, equal-weighted measure of commodities led a mixed run for the major asset classes while stocks and bonds in emerging markets posted the deepest losses, based on a set of exchange traded funds at the close of last week’s trading (Dec. 24).
* Trump signs pandemic relief bill, averts government shutdown
* Suspect in Nashville explosion died in blast, policy say
* Risks continue to lurk for global economy at year’s end
* UK headed for ‘bumpy period’ in Brexit transition period
* Bitcoin on track for third monthly gain in December–longest streak in over a year
* Is the worst yet to come for pandemic blowback in the US?
* 10yr Treasury market’s inflation forecast holds at 1.97%–highest since April 2019:
In this issue:
- US small-cap stocks continue to rally
- It’s Been A Good Year For Global Asset Allocation Strategy Benchmarks
- Managed Volatility Still Running Hot This Year
continue reading at The ETF Portfolio Strategist
As 2020, annus horribilus, crawls to a close, let’s look back on one of the bright corners of the year – book publishing. In matters economic and finance, the last 12 months delivered an extraordinary run of fascinating new titles. As usual in this year-end review, we’ll highlight ten that appeared in The Capital Spectator’s weekly Book Bits column over the course of 2020. Choosing only ten is difficult, and more than slightly subjective, but let’s give a whirl. As usual, the short list will be carved into two equally digestible servings, starting with five today, followed with the balance next week. Happy reading!
The holidays have snuck up on your editor once more and so it’s time to temporarily shutter the doors at the world headquarters of The Capital Spectator. We’ll be celebrating (with masks and social distancing, of course) for the rest of the week, returning with a Best of Book Bits on Saturday, Dec. 26, followed by the usual routine on Monday, Dec. 28. Stay safe, be merry and watch out for beta coefficients masquerading as cherries in your holiday punch. Happy Christmas!
The pickings remain slim for yield-seeking investors when sifting through the global markets. But cheer up: relative to inflation, the current payouts look reasonable and arguably attractive.
* Trump raises doubts about Covid relief bill by asking for changes
* US hospitals struggling with rise of Covid-19 patients
* New Covid-19 strain in UK may have spread to Europe and US
* WHO chief scientist: herd immunity unlikely until late-2021
* EU-China investment deal hits snag after tweet by Biden aide
* Israel gov’t collapses, triggering new election–fourth in two years
* Record gain for US GDP in Q3 revised up slightly
* US existing home sales fell for first time in 5 months in November
* Cryptocurrency XRP tumbles 25% after SEC lawsuit against XRP-linked Ripple
* Manufacturing growth in mid-Atlantic states strengthened in December
* US Consumer Confidence Index drops to four-month low in December