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Taper Tantrum

When the New York Times first affixed the words “Taper Tantrum” to a video released last week, they likely had no idea how appropriate the phrase would be for what would ensue in the financial markets over the next several days. Neither did we, or anyone else we know of for that matter. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/taper-tantrum/

Monthly Macro: Austerity vs Monetary Madness

In this month’s Monthly Macro piece we look at green shoots in the US, the changing attitude towards austerity in Europe, the pending questions surrounding China’s economy and the latest round of monetary madness courtesy of the Bank of Japan. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/monthly-macro-austerity-vs-monetary-madness/

Coach Gets The Tap

Coach is a brand best known here in the US for their leather accessories. The primary risks to the company’s future are the same as its opportunities as it now looks to expand its reach beyond the US and other developed markets into higher growing emerging markets. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/coach-gets-the-tap/

An Emerging Dichotomy

Since the financial crisis the reasons for favoring EM have changed. In a world where most developed countries are struggling under the weight of excessive debt and lackluster economic growth, emerging economies stand out as a diamond in the rough, but strong economic fundamentals have not translated into outperformance for EM equities. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/an-emerging-dichotomy/

A Golden Life Raft

The price of gold is reflecting the tug of war between near-term expectations of a global recovery and long-term inflation risks. As the old saying goes, “gold is no one’s liability” which makes it the perfect life raft for investors with a long-term perspective faced with a global economy that is drowning in debt. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/a-golden-life-raft/

Buying A Four-Letter Word

We added AAPL to our watch list when it broke below $550 in November, and we purchased the stock yesterday in our client portfolios at roughly $451/share. We’ll spare you the technical details as there is no shortage of hyper-granular analysis available on the web, but here are a handful of high-level reasons for our decision. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/buying-a-four-letter-word/

Can the Stock Market Repeat?

This will be the first quarter of negative growth in the past eleven, and while the majority of companies beat bottom line earnings estimates, the 41% that beat top line sales estimates is the lowest since the first quarter of 2009. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/can-the-stock-market-repeat/

Tipping Point for Interest Rates

The current path of government debt and central bank balance sheet expansion is clearly unsustainable.Everyone knows this and yet interest rates are at historically low levels. Will there ever be a tipping point which changes the direction of interest rates, and if so what will be the catalyst and when will it happen? https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/tipping-point-for-interest-rates/

Margin of Safety with Closed-End Funds

"A margin of safety is achieved when securities are purchased at prices sufficiently below underlying value to allow for human error, bad luck, or extreme volatility in a complex, unpredictable and rapidly changing world." – Seth Klarman https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/margin-of-safety-with-closed-end-funds/

Shanghai Hanging Low

The global slowdown and specific concerns over China’s economy have resulted in Chinese equities being one of the worst performing markets this year. This weakness largely reflects the market’s uncertainty surrounding the soft or hard landing debate. We believe the underperformance has left China’s market very attractive from a valuation standpoint. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/shanghai-hanging-low/

We Are All Turning Japanese

We decided to close out our position in the Yen because our thesis for the original investment has been significantly challenged. The tailwinds which have aided the Yen over the past two decades are weakening. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/we-are-all-turning-japanese/

It's An Upside Down World

In John Mauldin’s “upside down world” capital markets are no longer driven by finance and economics – they are driven by public policy. This is the world we’ve lived in for nearly four years now, and current price action in the market continues to bear this out. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/its-an-upside-down-world/

Three Fundamental Tailwinds For Gold

For centuries gold has been considered a store of value. Its portability and permanency gave rise to our modern day understanding of using currency in exchange for goods and services. We see three major fundamental tailwinds working in gold’s favor right now. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/three-fundamental-tailwinds-for-gold/

Macro Update: Central Bank Policy

We have been in a policy-driven market now for roughly four years. Both monetary and fiscal authorities have played a heavy-handed role in the economy and capital markets over this time period. Global central bank (monetary) policy is on our Macro Radar due to its post-financial crisis impact on investor sentiment and the performance of both stocks and commodities. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/macro-update-central-bank-policy/

Micro Update: Japanese Yen

Japanese bonds and the Yen have fared extremely well over the past three decades in the face of persistent deflation and sluggish economic growth. This strength is largely due to Japan’s aging population, which is becoming more heavily skewed to the older end of the spectrum. As such, the Yen makes for an excellent play against US Dollar devaluation. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/micro-update-japanese-yen/

Macro Update: China's Engineered Slowdown

Despite boasting the second largest economy in the world and being home to 20% of the globe’s population, China is still very much an “emerging” market. From a long-term perspective China’s growth story will clearly be one of the primary trends over the next several decades. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/macro-update-chinas-engineered-slowdown/

Micro Update: Walter Energy

Walter Energy (ticker: WLT) is a pure play metallurgical coal producer with operations in the United States. The market for met coal has been very tight over the past several years due to constrained supply and increasing demand from emerging markets like China, India and Brazil. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/micro-update-walter-energy/

Macro Update: 2012 Macro Radar

As we head into the New Year there are four factors on our “Macro Radar” that we believe will be the primary drivers of financial market performance in 2012, which means we will spend a lot of time proactively focusing our research efforts on understanding and monitoring their development throughout the year. https://www.seasoninvestments.com/insights/macro-update-2012-macro-radar/

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