Client Talking Points
The front month fear has crashed to the upside (doubling since the Russell topped July 7th), closing +46% last week to +54.8% VIX year-to-date; immediate-term TRADE overbought within a risk range of 16.85-21.67, so U.S. stocks should bounce.
Oil is not bouncing; after ramming the rocks of #Quad4 deflation (-4.4% last week), WTI is down another -1.9% this morning and this is starting to get gnarly for both spec and low-quality small/mid cap stocks (and bonds) across the energy complex.
Not the best place to be in #Quad4 (the Long Bond and Cash are), but definitely not the worst either – after closing +2.4% last week, Gold is +0.5% to $1230; +2% year-to-date vs. the Russell 2000 -9.5%; Dollar Down helping today.
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Top Long Ideas
The Vanguard Extended Duration Treasury (EDV) is an extended duration ETF (20-30yr). Now that we have our first set of late-cycle economic indicators slowing in rate of change terms (ADP numbers and the NFP number), it's time to really think through the upcoming moves of this bond market. We are doubling down on our biggest macro call of 2014 - that U.S. growth would slow and bond yields fall in kind.
Fixed income continues to be our favorite asset class, so it should come as no surprise to see us rotate into the Shares 20+ Year Treasury Bond Fund (TLT) on the long side. In conjunction with our #Q3Slowing macro theme, we think the slope of domestic economic growth is poised to roll over here in the third quarter. In the context of what may be flat-to-decelerating reported inflation, we think the performance divergence between Treasuries, stocks and commodities may actually be set to widen over the next two to three months. This view remains counter to consensus expectations, which is additive to our already-high conviction level in this position. Fade consensus on bonds – especially as growth slows. As it’s done for multiple generations, the 10Y Treasury Yield continues to track the slope of domestic economic growth like a glove.
Restoration Hardware remains our Retail Team’s highest-conviction long idea. We think that most parts of the thesis are at least acknowledged by the market (category growth, real estate expansion), but people are absolutely missing how all the pieces are coming together to drive such outsized earnings growth over an extremely long duration. The punchline of our real estate analysis is that a) RH stores could get far bigger than even the RH bulls seem to think, b) Aside from reconfiguring 66 existing markets, there’s another 19 markets we identified where the spending rate on home furnishings by people making over $100k in income suggests that RH should expand to these markets with Design Galleries, and c) the availability and economics on large properties for all these markets are far better than people think. The consensus is looking for long-term earnings growth of 28% -- we’re looking for 45%.
Three for the Road
TWEET OF THE DAY
GERMANY: DAX +0.3% to -7.8% YTD #EuropeSlowing
QUOTE OF THE DAY
You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.
STAT OF THE DAY
We hope you had the Long Bond (TLT) on versus the Russell 2000 (short side) as the performance divergence in being long #GrowthSlowing hit its widest for 2014 year-to-date, ex-reinvesting interest, TLT = +18.3% year-to-date vs. Russell 2000 -9.5%.