Sunday, April 14, 2013

How many dips can a dipstick buy?

Browsing my favorite blogs and sites tonight I came across this interesting read by John P. Hussman, Ph.D.  while visiting Mauldin.

A brief excerpt:

"Another pattern that we’ve trained ourselves to identify, with some concern, is an emerging tendency toward increasingly immediate attempts by investors to buy every dip in the market. This tendency reflects a broadening consensus among investors that there is no direction other than up, and that any correction, however small, is a buying opportunity. As investors clamor to buy ever smaller dips at increasing frequency, the slope of the market’s advance becomes diagonal or parabolic. This is one of the warning signs of a bubble. It does not require much of a "catalyst" for these bubbles to burst, other than the retreat of some investors from the unanimous consensus that buying every dip is an act of genius."

and another:

"One type of illusory yield is the earnings yield on stocks, where profit margins are presently 70% above historical norms, and where we’ve demonstrated both by accounting identity and with nearly 70 years of hard data (accurate even to the most recent 4-year period), that the primary source of this corporate surplus is a mirror image deficit in the combined savings of government and households (see Two Myths and a Legend and Taking Distortion at Face Value). Stocks are not a claim on next year’s earnings. They are a claim on a very, very long-term stream of future cash flows that will actually be delivered into the hands of investors over time. At present, the “forward earnings yield” on stocks is a terribly elevated and misleading representative of those cash flows, and investors are likely to find themselves disappointed if they use forward earnings as a “sufficient statistic” for long-term profitability. The other type of illusory yield is on junk debt, where yields have fallen to the lowest levels in history, and where the majority – perhaps more than all – of the perceived “yield” is actually a default premium based on the likely frequency of future default. "

the full article here:

Next week may be an interesting time in the U.S. and world markets.....


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