Banks are rolling lower!

Since early October I’ve given so many warnings about the stocks market it’s almost making me sick already. No, not because the market might correct or even crash, but because I must be starting to get annoying to all of you. The intention of my warnings is to make you aware that there are risks and that you do everything that’s in your power of protecting your wealth (see Do NOT underestimate the risk). This is why we’re here, aren’t we? Making money is important, but protecting it, this is an even more important task in my opinion. 

Let’s take a look at a banking sector. I wrote a post about financial sector a few weeks ago and that we are looking to short it under the right conditions (see Sectors on the watch to short). I was also going on about yields falling or bond prices rising in the intermediate term (see From yield curve inversion to bond squeeze?). 

What if the FED hikes for the last time this December and pauses with rate hikes next year? What if the natural consequence is that the banks suffer in the same period? And when banks are trading lower it is never a good sign for the stock market in general!

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From yield curve inversion to bond squeeze?

Yesterday we got the first US yield curve (3 and 5 year) inversion since 2007. Usually a recession follows within two years but I don’t want to scare you with that. Firstly, it doesn’t have to happen immediately and secondly, if you read any of my posts lately you know that getting defensive is not something we should fight against and in that case you’re well prepared for a case of a downturn.

The point of this post is to point out that we could see a flight to safety, that is into treasury bonds. A lot of people are expecting inflation and interest rates to rise over time, meaning bond prices to fall, including me (see Bond breakdown?). But it looks too many got ahead of themselves so it would be irresponsible to ignore the intermediate term risks in the market. Let me present what I think could happen.

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Generational shift

In the beginning of 1980s interest rates and inflation started to trend lower. They have trended lower ever since and they got to levels never seen before in the history of mankind. It feels that we have forgotten they could ever rise again. Inversely the same is true for bonds. But I think we are witnessing one of the greatest generational shifts that are happening right in front of our eyes.

What if interest rates and inflation are about to rise for the next 3 decades while treasury bond bubble is about to burst with bond prices trending lower in the same period?

Most media don’t even cover this topic. They’re too focused on clickbait stories. I covered this topic last September in But aren’t bonds supposed to only go up? and three weeks ago in Bond breakdown? posts. But it’s so important I need to give you another update.

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Bond breakdown?

… and inflation is coming.

I could end the post with this. For some this could be the news, for others maybe not so much. I wrote a post last year But aren’t bonds supposed to only go up? Like then also now I was chatting to a friend recently and he was very surprised when I said I’m expecting inflation to pick up.

Most people think we’ll stay in this disinflationary and low rates environment forever. But we’re getting inflation signs everywhere. For example, the housing market is strong in most cities (in Europe) and it seems it could stay that way for a while. There are some other big infrastructure projects under way. Food prices are slowly but steadily rising. Huge pressures on salaries starting to emerge. And I believe oil prices could rise to $100 in the near future too (see here)!

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Macro overview

I would like to present you my current macro views. The markets are at very interesting points and offer very good opportunities at the moment.

The format of this post will be slightly different than usual, I will post my tweets because I think that the combination offers a better reading experience.

I would like to start with the major stock market indices. There is so much interest in this market thus everyone has an opinion on it. I’ve been seeing so many bearish calls lately, such an increase in the negative sentiment,.. Sure, they might be right and as stated many times before, I don’t mind if the markets doubles or goes to zero from here. All I care is to participate from the right side. Read More

But aren’t bonds supposed to only go up?

I would like to start with my tweet from earlier today.

Are they? Or is just the cycle long enough so that the people forgot that bonds might also fall and interest rates rise over time?

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