Market Commentary


End of the Carnival in Brazil?

Author: Bill Witherell, Post Date: October 29, 2009

The Brazilian stock market has sizzled this year.  The 116% gain in the MSCI Index for Brazil is second only to that for Russia, which recovered from a very severe fall. Foreign investors have been flocking to the BM&FBOVESPA, Brazil’s multi-asset exchange in Sao Paulo, and to the Brazilian currency, the real, which has advanced […]

Fed Independence: R.I.P.?

Author: David Kotok, Post Date:

It’s now official.  The proposed legislation to reform America’s financial service supervision includes granting the Secretary of the Treasury a veto over Section 13(3) emergency action by the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.  If this becomes law, it will be a sad day for the independence of America’s central bank. The Secretary of the Treasury, […]

$80 Oil…..

Author: David Kotok, Post Date: October 23, 2009

The $80 oil price is starting to worry me a little.  Translate it into gasoline and you get somewhere around $2.50 per gallon or a little higher, depending on where in the US you fill up your tank.  Add to that a little cold weather and expanding crack spreads in refineries, and the price will […]

The Muni Market a Year (and change) After the Lehman Failure(What a Long Strange Trip It’s Been)

Author: John Mousseau, Post Date: October 20, 2009

John Mousseau is a portfolio manager and heads the tax-free Muni section of Cumberland. He is a member of the Management Committee of Cumberland Advisors. His bio is found at His email is A year ago the failure of Lehman Brothers (which we believe was avoidable, with responsive Federal Reserve action) sent the […]

Will the Europeans Be Eating Our Lunch?

Author: Bill Witherell, Post Date: October 19, 2009

The converse of the title above was asked by Business Week when the former socialist government in France introduced the 35-hour week.  As an American living in Paris at the time, this writer agreed that France and much of the rest of the Eurozone appeared likely to fall increasingly behind the US in the competition […]

Some Observations about Spot Interest Rates and Forward Interest Rates with help from Jason Benderly, Jim Bianco, Ned Davis & Howard Simons

Author: David Kotok, Post Date: October 18, 2009

“What’s going to happen to interest rates when the inflation comes?”  This is a recurring question in our quarterly client review meetings.  In a normal cycle one can make some reasonable projections about the changes in interest rates when the economy bottoms.  The usual sequence is that the Fed first allows the economic recovery to […]

Oh, Those Financials!

Author: David Kotok, Post Date: October 12, 2009

Oh, financials, financials, financials.  Here we go again.  JPMorgan Chase reports quarterly profits on Wednesday; Citi announces a quarterly loss on Thursday, Bank of America delivers its results (no one knows if loss or profit) on Friday.  The parade will continue right through Halloween. Cumberland does not use single stocks in its US equity account […]

Investing in a Weak-Dollar Global Economy

Author: Bill Witherell, Post Date: October 10, 2009

Last weekend, in the margins of the G-7 meeting in Istanbul, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner told reporters that it is “very important” to have a strong dollar and that the US will do “everything necessary” to maintain confidence in the dollar  He acknowledged that this meant getting the US budget deficit under control.  These words […]

Ed Yardeni on Policy

Author: David Kotok, Post Date: October 8, 2009

Note to readers:  Ed Yardeni opened his daily missive today with the text below.  We requested permission to reproduce it here and thank Ed for giving us the same.   Ed has written it better than my draft so I scrapped mine and am pleased to be able to share his words with our readers.   Full […]

The Fed Exit and the Role of BLOBS – Part 2

Author: David Kotok and Bob Eisenbeis, Post Date: October 4, 2009

This commentary is jointly written by Bob Eisenbeis and David Kotok; their bios may be found at Note to Readers:  This is the second of our two-part commentary on the Fed’s exit strategy and the role the Fed has played in complicating its own operating strategies and ability to conduct monetary policy.  The Fed […]

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