Posts filed under “Sentiment”
Consider this interesting divergence: Despite a plethora of bubble talk, chatter about high CAPE valuations, and market tops, investors have been carrying an awful lot of cash. This is not a new phenomenon, but rather, has been a persistent condition since this most hated rally in Wall St history began.
Before we proceed with the details, let me forewarn you what this column is not: It is not a “Cash on the Sidelines” argument. As we have discussed previously, there is ALWAYS cash on the sidelines. It is a lagging, not leading, indicator. When an investor buys an asset, it means the other side of the trade sells that asset. The cash merely transfers from one account to another. I don’t pay garner much insight from sideline cash until it reaches extreme deviations from historical means in individual investor allocations.
Regardless, it has not escaped my notice that a variety of surveys from major firms has revealed a lot of investment dollars is sitting in cash. Us Trust, Black Rock, UBS and American Express have all made similar discoveries, especially amongst high net worth/high income investors. What makes this so significant is the psychological component to this.
What do you get when you cross an overbought market with too few bears? Often, that combination of complacency leads to a correction. So far, all it has produced is a lot of frustrated contrarian traders. Stephen Suttmeier, technical strategist at Merrill Lynch, put the situation into broader context in his monthly chart book…Read More
You know I love these sorts of things: Dr. Ed Yardeni has a nice set of monster sentiment charts posted at his site. The link is Stock Market Indicators: Fundamental, Sentiment,. & Technical and its 20 pages of fun. courtesy of Yardeni Research, Inc. September 17, 2013.
Click for ginormous chart Source: Merrill Lynch I love the giant chart above using the overlay of the S&P 500 off the 1942, 1974, and 2009 generational lows as a guide. Its beautiful in its simplicity, and has a little something for everyone. The bulls get a chart that is bullish longer-term, the…Read More
Are investors being too complacent? That is the question that an be looked at in several different ways. Some folks rely on anecdotal evidence. Others use the VIX or the Put Call ratio. The St. Louis Fed uses their own metric which they call the “Financial Stress Index” (STLFSI). It combines 18 different weekly data…Read More
Click to enlarge Source: Bloomberg The pushback to yesterday’s chart (Sell Side Indicator: Wall St’s Improving Optimism) was rather fierce. Whether that reflects confirmation bias on the part of under-invested readers is unknown. But to provide equal time and to make sure that I am not engaging in my own confirmation bias, consider the…Read More
Consumer Confidence: A Useful Indicator of . . . the Labor Market? Jason Bram, Robert Rich, and Joshua Abel Liberty Street Economics Consumer confidence is closely monitored by policymakers and commentators because of the presumed insight it can offer into the outlook for consumer spending and thus the economy in general. Yet there’s…Read More
Click to enlarge Source: Merrill Lynch/BoA This is an interesting chart: Improving Wall Street sentiment is still no where near the levels associated with excessive sentiment. Despite the ongoing rally — or perhaps because of it — we are now all the back to the levels enjoyed at the lows in March 2009. Merrill notes…Read More