Posts by Kirill Zagalsky

U.S. Treasury Taking Steps to Avoid Debt Ceiling

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As U.S. debt has soared past the $22 trillion level, the ongoing problem is once again catching some attention. It was recently reported that the Treasury Department is taking some extraordinary measures to avoid violating the debt ceiling as it could have significant effects. Reuters reported that Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin sent a letter to House Speak Nancy Pelosi on Monday saying he was suspending investment in the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund and that a “debt issuance suspension period” would commence on Monday... Continue Reading

Another Explanation for the Rise in Gold

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The recent rise in gold has been widely discussed in financial media. There have been numerous issues attributed to gold’s rise including the U.S./China trade war, an increasingly-dovish Fed, a slowing economy and a rising risk of recession. One issue-albeit one you probably have not heard about yet-is the increasing risk of stagflation. The phrase stagflation was first used in Great Britain and today is understood to mean a period in which prices rise without a corresponding increase in demand. During a period of stagflation,... Continue Reading

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More Symptoms of Economic Trouble

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Today, the Institute for Supply Management reported that its manufacturing purchasing managers index fell in February to the lowest level since November 2016. Not coincidentally, it is not the only economic indicator to decline to the lowest levels since that time. Could this mean more symptoms of economic trouble? Of course, November 2016 was when Donald J. Trump was elected President in a victory that caught many off-guard. Since he has been in office, Trump has enacted significant legislation. His administration has performed significant deregulation,... Continue Reading

How About 55% Declines for Stocks?

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Love him or hate him, President Trump has accomplished a great deal in his first two years in office. Stocks are near record highs, unemployment is near a 50-year low and the economy is seeing real growth. Trump, who has never been one to shy away from voicing his opinions, and he recently tweeted: ‘Had the opposition party (no, not the Media) won the election, the Stock Market would be down at least 10,000 points by now. We are heading up, up, up!’ – President... Continue Reading

Does the Fed Have Any Credibility Left?

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The Federal Reserve has demonstrated that it is incapable of weaning the stock market off Fed-stimulus. This begs the question of whether the central bank has any credibility left as an inflation fighter and independent institution. The central bank began “treating” the market years ago. The Federal Reserve began with an initial round of QE, and when that didn’t work, it proceeded to provide additional injections in the form of QE2 and later QE3. Even that wasn’t enough, and the Fed was also forced to... Continue Reading

Could Another Round of QE be in the Cards?

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Markets have been wrestling with numerous issues in recent months. The ongoing war on trade, rising interest rates, Brexit, the continuing government shutdown and other geopolitical concerns to name a few. During that time, stock markets have come under pressure and recently flirted with bear market territory. A sharp rise in volatility didn’t help matters either, and investors have been left wondering if a market top has been reached. Much has been made of the mixed messages from the Fed. Not long ago, Fed chief... Continue Reading

What Can the Fed Do?

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The Federal Reserve has been the topic of considerable debate in recent months. The central bank has continued its course towards policy normalization over the last couple years but has recently run into a brick wall. The Fed has hiked several times over the last year, drawing the ire of numerous analysts and even the President of the United States. The central bank recently followed through on its plan for another 25-bps rate hike in December. The recent release of the latest FOMC meeting minutes,... Continue Reading

Risk is to the Upside

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When it comes to managing investments, risk management is everything. Knowing the potential risk on any position is imperative to success. Risk is not always to the downside, however, and oftentimes markets will exhibit behavior that warrants upside risk. The gold market may currently be displaying such upside risk. After spending much of 2018 probing the recent lows, the selling pressure eventually began to run dry. Try and try as they might, the bears were simply unable to push prices to significant new lows. In... Continue Reading

Get Ready for Some Serious Bumps

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The markets are ending the year on what can only be called a sour note. Stocks are either in or on the verge of entering bear market territory and the potential downside could be just getting started. Measures of market volatility are also highly elevated and could potentially be indicative of further selling pressure in the months ahead. The potential risks facing the economy and global stock markets are immense. The ongoing war over trade, the potential fallout from a hard “Brexit,” higher interest rates... Continue Reading

Make a Plan

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As the year comes to a close, there is no better time to begin thinking about and planning for next year. Significant changes in the global economy and market dynamics necessitate that investors take an objective look at their portfolios to determine how to try to stay a step ahead. Given the current economic and geopolitical backdrop, there as perhaps never been a more important time to have a significant allocation in hard, physical assets like gold. If you are thinking about making some changes... Continue Reading