Quarterly Commentary

Q4 2014 Commentary

The rise in the stock market was consistent with the continuation of a favorable economic environment and a modest improvement in corporate profits. The growth of real GDP continued into the fourth quarter, albeit at a slower pace than that of the third quarter. Interest rates remained low, inflation was well contained, and it appears…

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Q3 2014 Commentary

The modest increase in stock prices in the third quarter reflected the net impact of conflicting influences. Positive influences included the favorable rate of economic growth during the quarter, profits edging upward and meeting expectations for the most part, and a growing consensus outlook for economic growth at a greater than 3% annual rate for…

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Q2 2014 Commentary

The outlook for economic growth for the remainder of 2014 became much less clear by the end of the second quarter. The persistent downward revisions in the change in real GDP in the first quarter revealed an economic environment that was weaker than anticipated. At the end of 2013, the consensus economic forecast called for…

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Q1 2014 Commentary

The market produced a modest rise in the most recent quarter in the face of slowing economic growth in the US and overseas, a reduction in the rate of increase in corporate profits, and disturbing political shocks originating in Eastern Europe. Real GDP growth in the US was estimated to be approximately 2% in the…

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Q4 2013 Commentary

The substantial rise in the stock market during the fourth quarter reflected the continued rise in corporate profits, better than expected growth in real GDP, and the Fed’s efforts to expand the money supply. These favorable trends in profits and real growth are expected to continue into 2014 while the Fed gradually reduces its effort to expand…

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Q3 2013 Commentary

The substantial rise in the market in the third quarter brought the total return for the broad indexes to nearly 20% on a year-to-date basis. This healthy return has taken place in an environment where profits have been increasing at a single digit rate, GDP growth has stalled in a range of 2% to 2.5%…

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Q2 2013 Commentary

The market rose modestly in the second quarter as slow economic growth continued and the nature of future economic policies remained in question. The growth rate for the second quarter was revised downward substantially to less than 2.0%. This revision was not expected, and cast doubt on forecasts for economic growth for the remainder of…

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Q1 2013 Commentary

During the most recent quarter, the S&P 500 Index rose to a record high, as the US economy continued to grow at a well below average rate, corporate profits increased at a modest rate, interest rates were well below historic norms, and the Fed increased the supply of money at a rapid rate. In the…

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Q4 2012 Commentary

The stock market held its ground in the fourth quarter in the face of major uncertainties about the course of domestic economic policies, signs that the rate of growth of the US economy might be slowing, faltering economic growth in a number of countries overseas, and a worsening outlook for corporate profits. By the end…

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Q3 2012 Commentary

In the most recent quarter, the market seemed to float higher on the promise of a rising tide of liquidity. The commitment on the part of the Fed to expand the money supply at a rapid rate for the foreseeable future convinced many investors that any economic downturn could be forestalled or be brief. Thus,…

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