AAII Sentiment Survey: Pessimism Above 40% for First Time Since 2017

Pessimism among individual investors about the short-term direction of the stock market is at its highest level in more than year. The latest AAII Sentiment Survey also shows declines in optimism and neutral sentiment. Bullish sentiment, expectations that stock prices will rise over the next six months, fell 5.8 percentage points to 26.1%. Optimism was…

 

Political Risk Has Investors, Market Turning Bearish

A week after writing about the CBOE Volatility Index, or VIX, hitting a 23-year low, U.S. stocks turned in their worst day in 10 months this week as the VIX surged to its highest level in over a month. Most of the apprehension stemmed from Washington, D.C., as the Trump administration weathers storms on multiple…

 

Bullish Sentiment of Newsletter Writers & Retail Investors at Rare Divergence

This week, Rocky White of Schaeffer’s Investment Research wrote an article discussing the divergence in bullish sentiment among investment newsletter writers and retail investors. Specifically, he looked at AAII’s Investor Sentiment Survey and the weekly Investors Intelligence (II) sentiment poll and how bullish sentiment between the two indicates very different expectations. But first, some background….

 

AAII Sentiment Triggers Signal for Only Second Time Ever: Schaeffer’s Investment Research

As of January 12, 2017, bullish sentiment among AAII members stood at 43.6%, down 2.6-percentage points from a week ago. This is now the 106th straight week that bullish sentiment has been below 50%. A post from Schaeffer’s Investment Research notes that this is only the second time in the history of the AAII Investor…

 

Sentiment Supports the Borrowing of 2017 Gains Argument

Support for the concept of the post-election (“Trump”) rally borrowing gains from 2017 can be found in our Sentiment Survey. Optimism was both unusually low (a bullish sign) and unusually high (a bearish sign) in recent weeks. Though seemingly contradictory, the two signals may not be when the post-election rally is taken into account. I’ll…

 

Schaeffer’s Investment Research: AAII Sentiment Levels Flashing Short-Term “Buy” for S&P Stocks

This week Schaeffer’s Investment Research published an article indicating that bullishness among AAII members has more than doubled in less than a month to 49.9% as of last week. This is the highest reading since January 1, 2015. Past analysis from AAII had indicated that its Investor Sentiment Survey is more of a contrarian indicator,…

 

Too Much Confidence Is Bad for Your Portfolio

Higher levels of confidence about one’s ability to invest lead to worse returns. I realize that this may seem counterintuitive to some of you, but this is the conclusion of a study accepted by the Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance (an earlier version of the study is available on SSRN). It’s yet another example of…

 

The Impact Returns Have on How Much You Should Save

One of the fuzzier numbers in retirement planning is how much a person should save. Put another way, how much does an individual need to set aside each year to fund retirement expenses? It’s a function of projected expenditures, sources of other income (e.g., Social Security, inheritance, etc.) and expected investment returns. Though they are…

 

Retirement Can Be Long Enough for Something to Go Haywire

An interesting point was brought up at this week’s CFA Institute’s Financial Analysts Seminar: retirement is a long enough period of time for something to go haywire. The point was brought up by Barton Waring, a retired chief investor officer for Barclays (which is now BlackRock). He raised the topic during a discussion about retirement…

 

A Strategy for Losing Money

I can give you a name of a fund trading with the equivalent of a 23% sales charge. It’s actively managed by a company that’s incurred large outflows from its signature mutual fund following the departure of its star chief investment officer. Interested in owning it? You probably aren’t, but some investors were. PIMCO’s Municipal…