For investors bearish on U.S. economic growth, like us, Gold is having an amazing run this year. Year-to-date, Gold (GLD) is up 21.7% versus up just 1.4% for the S&P 500.
In this excerpt from The Macro Show earlier today, Hedgeye Retail analyst Brian McGough explains why certain retailers are overexposed to a rollover in the credit cycle.
Takeaway: The Brexit vote is a coin toss and, despite today's pop, European equities remain in crash mode.
Here's analysis via Hedgeye CEO Keith McCullough in a note sent to subscribers earlier today:
"BREXIT – coin toss? I’d say so. And since I don’t make calls on coin tosses, I’ll just give you both bearish intermediate-term TREND signals in FTSE (6388 resistance) and Pound ($1.47 vs. USD) with an intermediate-term risk range of $1.39-1.47 – in other words, even if they don’t exit, odds are both remain bearish TREND (because the UK economy is slowing regardless vs. last year’s cycle peak)"
"DAX – more definitively bearish TREND than FTSE, but that’s because DAX remains in crash mode (-22% from last year’s cycle high); reminder that we still have the Street low forecasts for both Eurozone and German GDP in 2H of 2016 – #GrowthSlowing is the tail wagging the political dog, and it’s not just the UK who has political risks accelerating in kind."
Hedgeye CEO Keith McCullough handpicks the “best of the best” long and short ideas delivered to him by our team of over 30 research analysts across myriad sectors.
St. Louis Fed head James Bullard has finally acknowledged that the U.S. economy is slowing. The eye-opening part of Bullard's Friday morning admission is this: He now says the U.S. economy's growth is so underwhelming that we may need no more than a single additional rate hike for the next 2.5 years.
As we've pointed out before, Bullard joins San Francisco Fed head John Williams in dialing back prior rate hike expectations. (Williams was perhaps the most ardent hawk, yearning for as many as five rate hikes in 2016.)
Oh how the mighty have fallen...
In a shocking mea culpa though, Bullard released a statement today about Fed forecasting and the U.S. economy saying:
"We are backing off the idea that we have dogmatic certainty about where the U.S. economy is headed in the medium and longer run. We are trying to replace that certainty with a manageable expression of the uncertainty surrounding medium- and longer-run outcomes."
Bullard now predicts that, “Output grows at a trend pace of 2%, but the unemployment rate remains quite low and inflation remains at 2%” over the next two-and-a-half years.
He even brought up the dreaded "R-word":
"We are currently in a no recession state, but it is possible that we could switch to a recession state. If such a switch occurred, all variables would be affected but most notably, the unemployment rate would rise substantially. Again, the possibility of such a switch does not enter directly into the forecast because we have no reason to forecast a recession given the data available today. The possibility of recession is instead a risk to the forecast."
And here's another interesting admission about the Fed's concern about "asset price bubble risk":
"The approach presented here also says little about asset price bubble risk, a factor that often enters the actual policy discussion."
Bullard's statement is an interesting read. Hopefully, we're moving toward a Fed that puts humility before dogma.
Editor's Note: Below is a brief excerpt and chart from today's Early Look written by Hedgeye Financial analyst Josh Steiner. Click here to learn more.
"... Synchrony fired a shot across the credit cycle bow on Tuesday by raising its guidance for expected net charge offs from a range of 4.3-4.5% to a range of 4.5-4.8%. SYF shares reacted by dropping ~14%, while the rest of the card space followed suit: Capital One (COF) was down ~5%, Discover (DFS) was down ~3% and so on...
I think Synchrony’s announcement Tuesday will prove to be one of the early timestamps used in the future to mark the end of the current credit cycle. Incidentally, many of the lender stocks peaked in mid-2015."
Takeaway: Trump's Triple Threat; Slow Bern; Clinton's Comfort Zone
Editor's Note: Below is a brief excerpt from Hedgeye Potomac Chief Political Strategist JT Taylor's Capital Brief sent to institutional clients each morning. For more information on how you can access our institutional research please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s been exactly one year since Donald Trump announced his candidacy for president and through many highs and more lows than anyone ever expected, he finds himself on the ropes again. Seven out of ten Americans give Trump unfavorable marks beating out Hillary Clinton’s high negatives by a healthy margin - and Clinton is now up 8-12 points over Trump in the general election.
Negative views of Trump are rising among a number of groups, jumping by double digits among liberals and conservatives, and among both Republican women and Democratic men. Even Republican leadership is scratching their heads and dodging questions regarding the presumptive nominee as the Republican party image faces historic lows.
Trump faces major challenges on three fronts: Clinton and the Dems, the media, and his fellow Republicans. He now has one month left to win over the Republicans and stanch the bleeding as the threat of a three-headed monster will be too difficult to overcome this fall.
In the beginning, few believed Bernie Sanders was a serious challenger to Clinton, but when the dust settled, Sanders won 23 primaries and more than 12 million votes, all while energizing progressives with calls for a political uprising. Sanders, who has spent most of his political career on the sidelines, is now a major symbol and is expected to play a feature role at July’s convention. He’s vowed to help Clinton defeat Trump and shepherd his supporters her way - but don’t forget to read the terms and conditions. Sanders will take his time before endorsing while aggressively pushing his leftist policy agenda to Clinton, party leaders and convention power brokers.
Despite her success, Clinton ran a rather uneven primary failing to understand and then extinguish the Sanders threat from the onset. Her victory speech after CA marked a turning point and now, on top of an multi-million dollar advertising assault, robust voter turnout, and her prudent response to the tragedy in Orlando, Clinton is becoming more comfortable with her message and her measured attacks on Trump. She’s engaging the people and opening up more on the trail - but still needs to inject much-needed confidence back into party, win over Independents and doubtful voters.
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