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Bonds, buy Bonds

Earlier this month I wrote a post Bumpy road ahead. Short term traders probably think what a foolish call that was, because the stock market went nowhere but up since then. While the intention of the post was not to call the top, it was to warn you that volatility could pick up. Riding up trends in low volatility environment is nice, and while calling tops is not sensible, we must ensure we not become complacent. Easy times can last longer than most anticipate, but they can be escorted by volatile moments too.

You might want to try to play heightened volatility by buying puts or by executing some other options strategy, shorting stocks, or by doing something else. However, I think the best risk reward opportunity right now is to be long bonds.

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Bumpy road ahead

Markets fluctuate, they go up and they go down too. Our job is to make the most out of these fluctuations by going with, and not fighting, the tape.

Even though you could have pointed out many reasons why one should have been expecting a correction, or even a crash, we’ve been bullish for the most part of last year up until now. Looking back, that was the only right decision to be made.

However, we think now could be the time for becoming cautious going forward. We’re not becoming ‘the end of the world’ bearish yet, but the ride could become bumpier.

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Manage money. Plan the future. We can help.

After years of professional involvement in the financial markets, writing a blog, and organizing educational workshops, I decided to help people in a more direct way.

I have set up an alternative fund, through which the investors in the fund will have an opportunity to the make the same returns I’m making. In the past I have achieved above average returns and the goal is to transfer my performance to the fund as well.

The purpose of the fund is to maintain the value of investors’ assets while achieving positive returns regardless of market or economic conditions. Unlike most other funds, the investment objective is the pursuit of absolute returns. This means that the goal is to achieve positive returns even in times of crisis, when most stocks and indices are losing value.

The investment objective is pursued through the active management of the fund’s assets. The assets will be invested in those investment classes and products that offer the best potential return to the lowest risk level at any given moment. In doing so, the fund’s assets can be invested not only in stocks or bonds, but also in other investment classes, such as commodities, which include precious metals and energies, cryptocurrencies, and more.

If you are interested in investing in the fund, please contact me here or through CT Capital Ltd.

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Time for a value play

I keep reading news that this stock market is over extended and we’re due for a major correction as if we didn’t have one just 12 months ago. It’s really hard to escape this trap, especially for a retail investor. People always find something why this market has to go everywhere but up, and if you present them some positive arguments, such as improving breadth worldwide, sentiment, not to mention record stock outflows among many others, they just disregard them.

In the previous post, Continuation of strength, I was focusing on the outperforming regions and sectors, those that continue to be in an up trend. Some are real beasts, such as health sector or $XLV ETF. In this one I’d like to present two value ideas that could start catching a bid after years of under-performance.

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Continuation of strength

This time around last year I was warning that we could get a stock market sell-off into year end. How right it was to be selling stocks ahead of it. Many investors were caught off guard and became, consequently, very negative and fearful going forward. Despite the markets having rebounded nicely since then, sentiment didn’t change much even though we’re just starting to see breadth expansion with more and more breakouts higher out of roughly two year long bases, see Are you ready for a stock market rally?.

So, what if this year will be the total opposite of last Q4? Meaning, could we see a broad based rally into holiday season? Let’s dive straight into it.

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What does this surge in Bitcoin price mean?

We’ve seen a very strong move in Bitcoin this Friday. The price moved up by good 16 and a half percent measured from the opening to the closing price. However, the move continued into Saturday and in less than a day, measured from low to high, rallied by almost 40 percent. Let’s try to put this into perspective and answer a couple of questions. For example we are interested how does the magnitude of such a move rank since 2010 and what does this mean for future expectations.

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Are you ready for a stock market rally?

Most are not. Well, except buy and hold crowd. And sentiment is reflecting that. Many sentiment measures and indicators are, with some variations, showing that people are sceptical about future expectations at best, where majority is very concerned and some are expecting a 2008 crisis style repeat.

I was talking to a director of a company the other day. Their business is closely linked to German industry, so he’s feeling the numbers coming from there. What fascinated me most was not his outlook, but the conviction he has. He’s absolutely sure we’re going down, there’s no doubt about it. He was pounding the table the markets will crash and not one single person could prove him wrong. Man, the conviction level was mind blowing.

If the meeting’s circumstances would be different, I’d invite him to take, under some conditions, an opposite side of a trade with me.

It’s hard to deny the current weak economic data coming from different parts of the world. There’s no doubt we are/were seeing an economic slowdown. However I’m trying to be open minded and am wondering if this was it, if data is about to start improving contrary to the popular belief that it’s going to get drastically worse.

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Dollar entering a secular bull run

I’ve been in the dollar bear camp for quite some time. It’s not hard for me to admit that, as things stand as of now, my view has been wrong. It’s nothing wrong with that. What would be wrong is staying stubbornly in a position and doubling down despite the facts proving me wrong.

I recently wrote a post FX markets about to get interesting again! where I argue that despite the path currencies may take take, there is one that’s most likely. That is a path of higher volatility. Now I’d like to update you on the topic. In this post let me show that the dollar could be starting a new secular bull run.

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FX markets about to get interesting again!

I haven’t been focusing on currency markets much in the past year or so and there’s a good reason for it, volatility. Rolling 30 day standard deviation is sitting at 15 years lows, in some pairs even lower. This is very well reflected by charts where we can see multi-year consolidations or sideways trends, however you want to put it. I don’t know about you, but I like trending markets, and most currency pairs have not been trending in years.

It feels, however, times are about to change. Volatility could increase soon thus making FX markets interesting again and when volatility does increase everyone will go on about currency wars or some other thing to justify their narrative.

Let me start with showing you a volatility chart of individual pairs going back 15 years and continue with an overview of some majors.

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Major inflection point: recession or melt up?

So many guys have been pounding the table with doom and gloom calls for so long but they were dead wrong. When the market finally turns down they’ll likely pat themselves on the back and say they weren’t wrong, just early. As PLB rightfully says if you get direction or timing wrong, the trade is wrong. This is one of the most important aspects of trading not understood by most.

The market has been trading in a range for the past 18 months where SPX has been between 2,550 and 2,950 with a short trip to 2,350 last winter. All this time we’ve been hearing bad news about trade wars, tariffs, Brexit, growth slowdown, earnings recession etc. Stocks have been creeping higher despite all of this and are sitting just below all time highs. If you’ve been trading the non price related data you’ve been most likely losing money and are eager to short this bad boy yet again, right?

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