Market News & Insights

Financial Literacy In America: Questioning Its Use And Meaning Today

Financial literacy. On cue with stock market sell-offs, recessions, and economic slowdowns, rest assured that a spike in articles, commentary and op-eds lamenting our nation’s financial acumen isn’t far behind. These lectures sport a common theme – ‘america is completely financially illiterate and we are doomed’ if we don’t quickly…

Global Market Update: China Weighs On Stocks And Oil

January was an eventful month, as stocks around the world had one of their worst starts in history. Many market commentators believe that the bad economic news from China is currently the strongest influence on markets. Worries about China are for the moment drowning out the good news in the…

Choosing An Investment Advisor? Here’s 5 Mistakes To Avoid

Choosing an investment advisor is a very important decision that many investors rarely give much thought to. Some simply make a choice based on the recommendation of a friend or family member, while others stumble upon an advertising campaign or other flashy marketing piece. In my experience, people spend more…

What Deleveraging? Student Loans And Government Debt Surge

Both student loans and automobile loans made a fresh new high in 4Q15.  That shouldn’t be viewed as “new” news.  Both these loans have been trending higher in the current cycle. When Great Recession ended, student loans were $710.9 billion. At the end of the fourth quarter last year, they stood at…

Stock Market Futures Push Higher; Traders Await Yellen

A positive divergence eventually showed up in price action overnight as stock market futures jumped higher. The S&P 500 futures rose into resistance levels around 1865, which were noted as targets yesterday. I suspect a retest of 1847-1851 at some point. The Morning Report: Stock Market Futures Advance Into Resistance…

Stock Market Update: The Selling Continues

The S&P 500 has undercut its January 20 closing low of 1859 and is moving toward the January 20 intraday low of 1812. Concerns continue to center on the banking system’s vulnerability to faulty energy loans and other at-risk debt. And this is weighing on the broad stock market index….

US Corn Weekly Review: Renewable Fuel Standard In Focus

Last Monday Ted Cruz walked away the Republican winner of the Iowa caucuses, which was mildly surprising to some considering Senator Cruz’s well-documented opposition to the Renewable Fuel Standard. The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which was adopted by Congress in 2005 and expanded in 2007, created mandatory blend levels for…

The Consumer Debt Service Ratio Is Flawed: Here’s Why

Let us start with this simple example: We have a 10-person economy, and 7 people earn $2,000 with $5,000 in debt and 3 people earn $3,000 with $6,000 in debt. All debts require a minimum payment of 2%. In aggregate, total income equals $23,000 and total debt service payments equal…

The Bank Of Japan Sent The World A Warning Last Friday

Last Friday the Bank of Japan (BOJ), Japan’s central bank, surprised the markets and enacted a negative interest rates policy. This stunning action follows on the heels of the European Central Bank (ECB), which took similar actions last year. Both regions, along with most of the world’ s leading economies,…