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The Best of What They Said and I Read week ending 10/1/2017

Short excerpts from articles I found interesting.

I may not agree with the author and the following material is not intended as investment advice.


Barron’s – September 30, 2017 – A Boring Week for Stocks – by Lawrence C. Strauss

  • “Small-cap stocks scored an impressive gain last week, with the Russell 2000 Index climbing 2.76% to a record high, amid a strong overall showing for equities. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index and Nasdaq reached new peaks, as well. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, up 0.25% on the week, missed out on setting a new record. But like other stock indexes, it enjoyed a strong September—a month when large-cap stocks have often struggled—and third quarter, gaining nearly 5% over the three months. The S&P 500 rose 0.68% last week, and the Nasdaq Composite was up 1.07%, regaining its footing after a poor start. The Nasdaq Composite is up 20.7% this year.”
  • “The Dow finished the month up 2.08%. Over the past century, the index has averaged a 1.09% loss in September, the worst-performing month, according to Bespoke Investment Group. Paul Hickey, co-founder of Bespoke, attributed the market’s recent gains to two factors: “We’re seeing growth picking up again,” he says. And he cited the increasing optimism that some kind of a tax-reform package will get passed in Washington in the near future.”
  • “…S&P 500 tech stocks are up 26% this year, ahead of all other sectors. Health care is in second place, having gained nearly 19%...”

The Wall Street Journal – Sept. 30 – Oct. 1, 2017 – Stocks, Dollar Regain Edge – by Akane Otani

  • “The “Trump trade” is making a comeback, reflecting investors’ renewed belief in the strength of the U.S. economy and fresh hopes for business-boosting policy from Washington.  U.S. stocks keep chugging higher. The S&P 500 has risen 4% since June 30, notching its eighth consecutive quarterly advance. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 4.9% in the third quarter, posting its longest streak of quarterly advances—eight—since 1997. The blue-chip index is up 13% this year.”
  • “In a throwback to the early days after President Donald Trump was elected, shares of U.S. banks and industrial companies are climbing and small-capitalization stocks are in record territory, while Treasury bonds and their stock-market proxies have fallen out of favor. The U.S. dollar, beaten down for much of 2017, is rebounding.”
  •  “We’re still in a slow-growth, low-rate and tame-inflation environment,” said Michael Arone, chief investment strategist at State Street Global Advisors. Mr. Arone said he believes central banks will keep rates lower for longer, despite hinting otherwise in recent months.”
  • “In another sign of wariness, fund flows show investors are continuing to pour money into technology companies, which are thought by some to offer the best returns in a sluggish economic environment.  Mutual funds and exchange-traded funds that invest in technology stocks drew in about $1 billion of inflows for the week ended Sept. 20, the second largest inflows for the sector on record, according to data from fund tracker EPFR Global…Even with some recent share-price declines, the S&P 500 technology sector remains up 26% this year, making it the best performing of the 11 major sectors in the index for 2017…”

Forbes 100th Anniversary Issue – Revelance by John Doerr – Venture Capital Midas

  • “Here’s how I stay relevant:  I read.  I listen. I try to surround myself with smart people of all ages and backgrounds.  Most Wednesday nights, my wife and I host a group of college students for dinner to share their worldviews and the work they are doing.  They inspire me with their potential and passion to change the world.”

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