Stocks have been rallying today after last week’s anxiety inducing sell-off, with this morning’s positive earnings and economic data also helping the mood. A lot is riding on the Q1 earnings season which ramps up this week, with more than 50 S&P 500 members announcing results.
The markets were down big this week, with much of the profit-taking in high growth stocks and popular momentum names. Although economic data here in the U.S. continues to improve, the market was showing signs of exhaustion over the past couple months as less stocks were participating in the rally to new highs.
The market remained positive, near its December peak for three months, primarily based on hopes. At this point, the market needs more than just hopes.
Legendary and widely-acclaimed mining expert Pierre Lassonde, Chairman of Franco-Nevada (FNV) and President of Newmont Mining (NEM) from 2002-2006, recently spoke with Financial Sense for a wide-ranging interview on the mining industry, gold, and, lastly, natural gas.
Bridgewater Associates did an analysis of pension funds recently and concluded 85% of them will fail if returns average 4%. Bridgewater notes that public pensions have just $3 trillion in assets to invest to cover future retirement payments of $10 trillion over the next many decades.
With recent events in Ukraine strongly affecting security relations between the West and Russia, both Brussels and Moscow are increasing efforts to reduce their mutual energy-financial dependency.
“Who can print money, will print money” is how my friend Patrick Barron put it succinctly the other day. This adage is worth remembering particularly for those periods when central bankers occasionally take the foot off the gas, either because they genuinely believe they solved the problem, or because they want to make a show of appearing careful and measured.
With historically low inventory levels, tighter EPA regulations, and current Ukrainian tensions, energy expert Robert Rapier told Financial Sense in a recent interview that there’s a good chance we’ll see spikes in the price of natural gas this year.