North Star Financial Services

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So far North Star Financial Services has created 51 blog entries.

Bull Bear or Tiger

Last Week: The market treaded water until Friday morning, when a flurry of positive news stories invigorated Wall Street. Strong Chinese exports and money supply growth, record earnings form JPMorgan, a well-received DIS streaming analyst meeting, and a big $50B oil merger all contributed to the bullish mood. Earlier in the week trading volume was at its lowest level of 2019, as Sports betting provided more excitement than the stock market [...]

2019-04-15T09:52:11-05:00April 15th, 2019|

1st Quarter 2019 Market Commentary

The first quarter of 2019 started strong for both the stock and bond markets.  Large cap U.S. stocks, measured by the S&P 500 index, were up 13.6% for the quarter, offsetting much of their decline in the previous quarter, while small cap stocks, measured by the Russell 2000, rose 14.6% for the quarter.  Foreign stocks again trailed the US indexes - the FTSE Developed all cap ex-US index (Europe, UK, Australia [...]

2019-04-10T11:30:40-05:00April 10th, 2019|

7 Day Rally

Last Week: The porridge heated up enough to nourish the Goldilocks rally for another week. Stronger than expected economic data from China on Monday and a solid U.S. jobs report on Friday were the bookends to continued perceived progress on the trade front during the week. The S&P 500 gained 2.06% to close at 2892, which is less than 2% short of its all-time high set in September. Although trading volume [...]

2019-04-08T08:08:10-05:00April 8th, 2019|

Mad March Bounce

Last Week: The global bounce-back equity rally resumed, as the S&P 500 posted its best week since November by gaining 2.89%. The narrative remained the same with accommodative monetary policy, subdued inflation, reduced trade tensions, and aggressive stimulus programs in China. The economic data was tepid as durable goods, new home sales, industrial production, and the Empire Manufacturing Index all came in slightly below expectations. January retail sales exceeded expectations, but [...]

2019-03-18T09:42:42-05:00March 18th, 2019|

Cold Porridge

Last Week: The temperature of the global economic data porridge was cold enough to nudge the stock market pendulum towards risk-off, as the ECB and China both reduced growth forecasts while the U.S. jobs report was downright frigid. Concerns shifted from monetary tightening by the big bad Fed to the prospects of an impending global recession. Things were not all quiet on the eastern front, as North Korea has rebuilt its [...]

2019-03-11T10:04:14-05:00March 11th, 2019|

The Pendulum Rests

Last Week: Inertia:  a property of matter by which it remains at rest or in uniform motion in the same straight line unless acted upon by some external force. With no changes to the narrative to motivate traders, the stock market pendulum has recently found a resting place. Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s communications provided support to current expectations that the rate hike cycle was on pause for the foreseeable future. A [...]

2019-03-04T09:03:30-05:00March 4th, 2019|

Predictable Pattern Persists

Last Week: One of George Carlin’s best comedy routines was the insight from the Hippy Dippy Weatherman that the forecast for tonight would be dark. With continued dark overnight with widely scattered light by morning. Over the past two months, market gurus have been forecasting progress on trade talks with China and an accommodative Federal Reserve. Like the sun rising and setting, for another week the trade and Fed narratives remained [...]

2019-02-25T11:00:32-05:00February 25th, 2019|

Chameleon on the Run

Last Week: Where have all the Bears gone? Or perhaps the long-established visual of Bulls and Bears should be replaced with a cluster of chameleons (it’s actually a starship of chameleons according to Wikipedia, but that sounds made-up). The same chameleons that were relentlessly selling stocks from October through Christmas Eve have been buying ever since. They are strange computer-generated animals who seem to be almost entirely motivated by “blending in” [...]

2019-02-18T16:22:51-05:00February 18th, 2019|

The Early Bird Sells too Soon

Last Week: The market held onto its post-Christmas gains as reasonably good corporate earnings outweighed new evidence of a slowing global economy and continued uncertainty over trade policy. On the earnings front the blended (combines actual results for companies that have reported and estimated results for companies that have yet to report), year-over-year earnings growth rate for the fourth quarter is now 13.3% today, which is above the earnings growth rate [...]

2019-02-11T08:49:38-05:00February 11th, 2019|

Bears Hibernate while Patriots Win

Last Week: What a difference a month makes. December was one of the worst months for the stock market in history, with December 24, 2018 the worst Christmas Eve on record. Flip the calendar forward, and 2019 kicked off with the best January performance in 30 years. The triple headwinds of the Fed, the trade war, and the economy dissipated and then shifted to provide a decent tailwind. Most notably, Fed [...]

2019-02-04T10:10:21-05:00February 4th, 2019|