More than one-half of the S&P 500 companies have reported and more than 75% have beaten their earnings expectations. In addition, second half 2019 profit and revenue outlooks are coming in better than many investors recently feared.
The underlying theme for this bull market has been doubt and disbelief. Many investors expect the next downturn and recession to be just around the corner. Those fears once again must be put aside.
This week our Federal Reserve lowered interest rates by ¼%. The Fed signaled that they would continue to adjust policy to encourage a continuing economic expansion. Money flows into stocks are also strong. This buying pressure bodes well for further gains this year. Recently, we have seen flows into energy stocks. These are highly correlated with a stronger economy. Maybe this is presaging even better second-half economic growth.
Thursday, President Trump announced additional tariffs on Chinese products exported to the U.S. This has temporarily upset investors. The Bull believes this disruption will prove to be temporary. After all, tariffs on Chinese goods are not new, our companies and our economy can and will adjust. In fact, some companies have already been doing so by moving some production and sourcing elsewhere. Other companies are being hurt. The Bull is evaluating needed shifts in portfolios to benefit from a changing global trade environment. Anything done will be incremental.
Stay steady, my friends.