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Posted by in News

Exclusively on Seeking Alpha

Published June 9, 2016

By J. André Weisbrod

SUMMARY

·         After a fearful swoon at the beginning of the year, most stock markets are back in positive territory.

·         While we did some buying and increased equity exposure during the dip, we were not confident enough to be aggressive.

·         Multiple unsuccessful attempts to forge new highs over the past year indicate that an aging bull may be at or near its end.

·         Economic conditions are mixed and at times data is confusing or contradictory.

·         Overall market valuations are above average and possibly in warning territory.

·         Large volume computer-generated trading has turned the stock market into a rigged casino that is against traditional fundamental investing.

·         The huge expansion of ETFs and the trend toward “robo” investing create new market influences that could actually increase risk and hurt investors.

·         Three of the forces holding up stocks up are suspect.  One could evaporate with a negative event or a funky algorithm gone haywire.  The second compounds the first and creates greater future risk.  The third is a ruse, plain and simple.

·         There may be nuts out there, but they might not be ones even a seeing squirrel might like.

·         This is a time to err on the conservative side.

CLICK HER TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE 
http://seekingalpha.com/article/3980949-blind-squirrels-nuts-investment-environment

Are you in the right place financially?  Is your strategy sound?  Does your investment portfolio need a review?  Have you recently thought through your risk management?  If you would like to discuss these or any other financial matters, please call 412-367-9076.

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If you need help managing your personal or business economic trends, we are here for you.  Call 412-367-9076 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation in person or by phone.  STAAR Financial Advisors, Inc. offers wealth creation, management and utilization opportunities for people, families, businesses and organizations at all stages of life.  We provide planning, business consulting and investment management, including private equity opportunities for accredited investors.

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Copyright 2016, STAAR Financial Advisors, Inc, 604 McKnight Park Dr, Pittsburgh, PA 15237.  All rights reserved.  No publication or dissemination of the contents, either electronically, via internet or physical printing is permitted without written consent of STAAR Financial Advisors.  Subscribers and clients may copy or print for their own use.  Quotes and links may be used according to accepted convention as long as proper attribution and credits are made.

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Nothing contained on this site should be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any security. Nor is it intended as investment, tax, financial or legal advice.

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Posted by in News

August 14, 2015

By J. André Weisbrod

 

As of August 13, Global stocks were mixed year-to-date with the MSCI ACWI Index up 1.98 year-to-date..  Examples of wide variance are Latin America (down over 21%) and Europe and Japan (up almost 14%).   Developed foreign stocks (EAFE Index) were up 5.94% while emerging markets (MSCI EM) were down 8%.   In the U.S. the S&P 500 was up only 1.2% (most of the positive due to dividends) while the NY Stock Exchange Composite was down .87% and the Russell 2000 (Small Cap) was up only .76%.   Barclays Aggregate US bonds were up .55%.  The Global Bond Aggregate was down almost 3%.  All in all a diversified balanced portfolio’s performance year-to-date is likely to be flat to up a percent or two, and that is if the portfolio has no expenses, which is virtually impossible to achieve. 

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Posted by in News

May 2, 2014

I have been asked by a couple people recently why energy, real estate and utilities have been doing so well lately.  The secondary question is will the trend continue and what about portfolio emphasis going forward?

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Posted by in News

Current Economic Trends
April 24, 2014

Interest rates, Inflation, Quantitative Easing Taper, Federal Debt, Household Debt, Bull Market, Unemployment, Jobless Claims, Labor Force Participation, Population Growth, Economic Hubs, Middle East Societal Tensions, Income Disparity, Cyber Threats, Lack of Values in Leadership, Growth of Megacities, On Line Misinformation

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Posted by in News

April 4, 2014: Andre Weisbrod, CEO and chief investing officer at Starr Financial Advisors with $41 million AUM in Pittsburgh, Pa.: I think this market is struggling to retain its momentum. From a historical and common-sense perspective, it is reasonable to expect more than a 5% correction to 

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Posted by in News

"As a bull market continues, almost anything you buy goes up. It makes you feel that investing in stocks is very easy and safe and that you're a financial genius. " -- Ron Chernow

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Tagged in: Markets Stocks
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Posted by in News

"We simply attempt to be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful." -- Warren Buffett

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Posted by in News

October 10, 2013, 4:00 PM 

Let me be frank.  I hate markets driven by news.

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Posted by in News

September 17, 2013

As the markets bounced back up over the last two weeks, we were reminded not so much of "irrational exuberance" as we were of shifting winds before a storm.   This market is too news-driven for our taste.  It is also trader-driven, which greatly affects short-term swings.  (To read the full report, click below.  This is for clients and VIP Members only, so you must log in to read.)

Read more... 

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Posted by in News

How to Buy in a Much Needed Correction

By Andre Weisbrod

If you have been following my posts you know I have been expecting a correction for many weeks now.  In my May 30 blog article (VIP members and clients only) , As Bulls Go This is a Doozy! But Can it Continue?   I showed that this bull market had "gained significantly more in its first 1,060 days than the three previous bulls.  We are 4.2 years into this bull and so far its strength has been surprising with the S&P 500 increasing more than 30% higher than the 1987-2000 and 2002-2008 bulls grew in their first 4.2 years.  The early years of the 1974-1987 bull aren’t even close."   In my June 4 Facebook and Twitter post I said, "The action since the S&P 500 peak on May 21 looks very much like the beginnings of a correction."

As of today...

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Posted by in News

Yesterday we saw the market butting up against resistance.  Today it effectively broke through the ceiling.  Now...

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Posted by in News

On April 14th the S&P 500 hit a new intraday high at 1597.35.   For the last four days ...

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Tagged in: Markets S&P 500 Stocks
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Posted by in News

Note:  In our March 20 update we neglected to comment on BA, which we added 1/18/13 in a $74.29-$75.16 intraday range.  It recently

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Posted by in News

The STAARBlogTM
March 5, 2013                        Follow STAAR Financial onFacebookandTwitter

Editor: J. André Weisbrod

DOW Sets Record High – So What?   

It was only a matter of time and it took over 5.6 years to do it.  It seems everyone gets crazy when something like this happens.  I remember when the DOW first hit 5,000, then 7,000 and 10,000.  So what?  The DOW will

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Posted by in News

TheSTAARStrategiesTM Report
February 14, 2013                                                                           Volume 24, Issue 3

By J. André Weisbrod

Golden Thoughts – Is gold all that?

The price of gold has been languishing lately.  Since its $1,895 high in 2011 it is down over 13% to $1,645 as of yesterday, February 13, 2013.  It had been as low as $1,540 in 2012 (down almost 19%) before rising to $1791.75 in October 2012 before heading back down.  From a technical standpoint the price trend bias is still downward.

Yet to hear all the “gold bugs” on the radio, gold is still the hottest thing since wasabi was invented.  The reality of gold is that its value depends on three variables.

First is...

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STAARExclusiveTM
Results-Oriented Research for
Professional Advisors and Accredited Investors

Special Alerts and Updates for February 6, 2013
Positions and Markets - Buy or Sell?

First, the US markets particularly look overbought and would seem due for at least a small correction. The US markets still look strong, but the international markets are turning downward. This could be a short-term top. Insider trading has turned a bit bearish. Specific positions are turning, which could be a leading indicator. The caveat is the

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Posted by in News

The STAARBlogTM
January 1, 2012                     
Follow STAAR Financial on Facebookand  Twitter

2012 Investment Markets Results

2012 was a good year for stocks, with above average returns for the major indexes.  The total return (including dividends) for the DOW Industrials was 10.24%.  The S&P 500 returned 16% and the Russell 2000 (Small Companies) rose 16.35%.   International Stocks (EAFE Index) also did well, returning almost 14%.

Bonds had a below average year.  The era of big returns in bonds appears to be over.  The Barclays US Gov’t Index total return came in at 2.02% and US Treasury Bills only .09%.  Corporate bonds did better with the broad Barclays US Aggregate Bond Index returning 4.22%.

Gold ended 2012 up 7% after falling in the fourth quarter.  Silver was up over 8%.

 

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Posted by in News

The STAARBlogTM
January 1, 2012                     
Follow STAAR Financial on Facebookand  Twitter

Fiscal Cliff Deal Goes to House; the Real Issue Remains Deficit Reduction

The Senate and President Obama reached a deal early this morning.   Passed by a large majority of 89 senators, the bill will now go to the House, which has until noon on Thursday to approve it. 

Key provisions: Higher taxes on families making over $450,000 annually – highest tax bracket goes from 35% to 39.6%.  Increased

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