Is Inflation Bad for the Stock Market?

The debate over whether stocks rise or fall in reaction to inflation continues. But studies indicate what many investors have suspected all along: The market is inconsistent. Editor’s Note: The “throwback” article was written in early 1986. The U.S. economy is experiencing the lowest inflation rates in almost two decades. The stock market is at…

 

Readers Split on Benefit of Fed, Interest Rate Hike

After a decade of holding interest rates near zero, the Federal Reserve has raised rates three times in a year. While many would agree that the “free money” environment following the financial crisis of 2007-2009 has fueled the stock market to its long bull run, savers have been seriously hurt by low money market rates….

 

Weekly Survey: Readers’ Attitudes Split Regarding Prospects of Rising Inflation

Inflation, or the apparent lack, has been a hot topic over the last several months as the Federal Reserve boosts interest rates from near-zero. The Federal Open Market Committee’s July meeting minutes showed policy makers were divided over whether to be cautious over recent weakness in inflation or to move back to a more normal state of…

 

Market Shrugs Off “New Normal” of Rising Interest Rates

To the surprise of almost no one, the Federal Reserve announced this week that it would raise short-term interest rates and offered greater details of its plans to shrink its $4.5 trillion portfolio of bonds and other assets, which it expects to start later this year. The Fed said it would increase its benchmark federal…

 

My Notes From the CFA Institute’s Annual Conference

I spent the first half of this week at the CFA Institute’s Conference in Philadelphia. The conference is targeted toward CFA charterholders and covers a very wide range of topics. It’s also an international conference, with the third biggest delegation of attendees, behind the U.S. and Canada, coming all the way from South Africa. I’ve…

 

The Fed-Trump Divergence

To the surprise of almost no one, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) announced that it raised its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points (0.25%) to the range of 0.75% to 1.0%. This was the third interest rate hike in a decade, but the second since December. This seems to signal that the Federal…

 

Rate Hikes, Inflation and What You Earn

Yesterday’s interest rate hike by the Federal Open Market Committee was the third in a 15-month period. More notably, it was just the third rate hike since the financial crisis. The rate hike represents another step in the (so far) very gradual removal of stimulus. At current levels, rates remain low on a historical basis…

 

AAII Sentiment Survey: Pessimism Declines While Neutral and Bullish Sentiment Rise

Pessimism among individual investors fell from last week’s AAII Sentiment Survey, while bullish and neutral sentiment rose. Bullish sentiment, expectations that stock prices will rose over the next six months, rose 1.2 percentage points, to 31.2%. Despite the slight increase, bullish sentiment remains below its historical average of 38.5% for the third week in a…

 

U.S. Indexes Mark 25-Year Milestone

Please note that U.S. markets will be closed on Monday, February 20, in observance of Washington’s Birthday (President’s Day). AAII offices will also be closed. This week saw several market indexes notch multiple all-time highs. The Dow Jones industrial average recorded its fifth consecutive record close on Wednesday, the second such streak in roughly two…

 

Consumers Doing Better This Year, Say Nearly Half of Surveyed Investors

This week’s Sentiment Survey special question asked AAII members how the average consumer is fairing relative to a year ago. Approximately 45% view the average consumer as faring better or somewhat better than a year ago. A better job market, low inflation and economic growth were the primary reasons why. Slightly more than 20% think…