By the second week of June, the markets had finished mostly up as investors continued to digest information out of the European Union regarding the status of Greece’s epic struggle to control spending and debt. To be honest, it seems like we hear something new almost every week regarding Greece. They have a deal…No, they don’t…Yes, they do…No, they don’t…
The constant back and forth on Greece's financial status has literally caused the U.S. stock markets to trade in a very narrow range for almost six months, in spite of data that shows continued improvement in the U.S. economy. Most recently, we learned:
- Consumer sentiment rose ½% in May
- Small business confidence climbed 1.4 points on the Small Business Optimism Index to reach 98.3 in May (from the National Federation of Independent Business)
- U.S. imports rose 1.3% in May
- U.S. job openings hit 5.4 million (the highest number since the Bureau of Labor Statistics started collecting the data in 2000)
We may sound a bit like a broken record when we say this, but the data tells us that the issues with Greece are really not that big of a concern for the Eurozone (and an even smaller concern for the U.S.), and that the global economy should continue to improve. As volatility hits the U.S. markets, we look for investments that may be “on sale” so that we can buy them at what appears to us to be unnecessarily reduced prices.
That is not to say that there is nothing to worry about. The Ukraine continues to be problematic (with Russia pretending that sovereign territory is not that sovereign if nobody will fight for it), Iran continues to pursue a nuclear (or “nuculer” for you George W. Bush fans) weapon, and ISIS continues to push across the Middle East, spreading fear and misery (through their use of unspeakable violence). While these are not imminent threats to the U.S. economy, they are issues that we are watching very closely.
Much as a ship captain monitors his navigational instruments, we will continue to monitor both the policymakers and the economic indicators that help us navigate the vast sea of investment options. Commentaries like this are our way of keeping you informed of the course we are charting.
Photo ©iStock.com/Maartje van Caspel
VanDenburg Capital Management is located at 2800 Cleveland Ave, Suite B in Santa Rosa, CA 95403. Todd VanDenburg, Registered Representative, offering securities and advisory services through Independent Financial Group, LLC, a registered broker-dealer and investment advisor. Member FINRA/SIPC. Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction located at 12671 High Bluff Dr., Suite 200, San Diego, California 92130. VanDenburg Capital Management and Independent Financial Group, LLC are not affiliated entities.