Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Best Cash ISA Savings Account for Soaring UK Inflation - February 2018 - Nadeem_Walayat
2.Gold Price Forecast 2018 - February Update - Nadeem_Walayat
3.Bitcoin Crypto Currencies Crash 2018, Are We Near the Bottom? - Nadeem_Walayat
4.Trump Bubble Bursts, Stock Market Panic Dow 1175 Point Crash Analysis - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Gold Corrects, Bitcoin Markets Crash, Whilst Stocks Plunge - Nadeem_Walayat
6.US Treasury Bonds: Fuse to Light the Bonfire - Jim_Willie_CB
7.Dow Falls 666 Points As Cryptocurrencies Crash And Krugman Emerges From His Van - Jeff_Berwick
8.Stock Market Roller Coaster Crash Ride Down to Dow Forecast 23,000 - Nadeem_Walayat
9.Trading the Shadows - Oil, Dollar, Stocks, Gold Trend Analysis - B.R. Hollister
10.Stock Market Analysis: Baying for Blood - Abalgorithm
Last 7 days
Stock Market Volatility Attributed to 'Shenanigans' - 24th Feb 18
Reintroducing The Concept Of Stock Market Investing Risk - 24th Feb 18
How Global Growth and Infrastructure are Driving Commodities - 24th Feb 18
Tips to Get Financing for a New Business - 24th Feb 18
Heavy Police Presence at Resumption of Sheffield Street Tree Fellings Protests - 24th Feb 18
Why You Should NOT Sub4Sub Free Youtube Subscribers - YTpals, Subpals, SubmeNow Test Results - 23rd Feb 18
One Belt, One Road, One Direction for Precious Metals - 23rd Feb 18
Gold’s Curious Sentiment - 23rd Feb 18
Relationship Between Crude Oil and U.S. Dollar in February 2018 - 23rd Feb 18
Why The Next Oil Boom Will Be Fueled By Blockchain - 23rd Feb 18
Gold Bull and Bear Markets - 23rd Feb 18
Why Recent Lows Are Crucial for US Dollar - 23rd Feb 18
Will Bitcoin be Larger Than NEO in 2018? - 23rd Feb 18
Stock Market SPX Probable Pop-n-drop - 22nd Feb 18
Stocks Fail to Hold Gains, But Still No Correction - 22nd Feb 18
Why We Should Buy Essay - 22nd Feb 18
The Latest US Debt Blow - 22nd Feb 18
6 Tips For Seamless Business Foreign Exchange - 22nd Feb 18
How to Anticipate Stock Market Trend Changes - 21st Feb 18
Gold Miners’ Rally? What Rally? Watch Out for More Fake Moves! - 21st Feb 18
5 Big Drivers of Higher Inflation Rates Ahead - 21st Feb 18
Goofy Indictments Divert Attention from Criminal Abuses at the FBI and DOJ - 21st Feb 18
Bitcoin or British Pound ‘Pretty Much Failed’ As Currency? - 21st Feb 18
Stock Market Waiting for the Fed - 21st Feb 18
National Identity Demands Restrictive Immigration - 21st Feb 18
Best Opportunities for Freelance Technical Writing Jobs - 21st Feb 18
4% US 10-year Treasury Note Yield Will Be a Floor Not a Ceiling - 20th Feb 18
Governments Are LYING about Their Gold Activities while Mining Companies Cower - 20th Feb 18
No Silver Lining Here - 20th Feb 18
Semi Conductor Stocks SEMI Bearish? - 20th Feb 18
The Prisoner Promised Land - 20th Feb 18
Best Car Dash Cam Review: Z-Edge S3 Dual Dash Cam - UNBOXING (1) - 20th Feb 18
How Inflation Reduces The Real Value Of Social Security Net Of Medicare Premiums - 19th Feb 18
Could Stellar Lumens be a Challenger to Bitcoin for International Payments? - 19th Feb 18
US-China Trade War Escalates As Further Measures Are Taken - 19th Feb 18
How To Trade Gold Stocks with Momentum - 19th Feb 18
Is a New Gold Bull Market on the Horizon? - 19th Feb 18
Stock Market Decision Point! - 19th Feb 18
An Inflation Indicator to Watch, Part 1 - 18th Feb 18
Get on Top Of Debt Before It Gets on Top of You - 18th Feb 18
Will the Stock Market Make a Double Bottom? - 18th Feb 18
5 Reasons Why Commodities Are the Investment Place to be in 2018 - 18th Feb 18
1 Week Later, Stock, Bond Market Risk Remains ‘On’ as 2 of 3 Amigos Ride On - 17th Feb 18
Crude Oil Prices: A Case of Dueling Narratives? - 17th Feb 18
Free 1000 Youtube Subscribers Services - YTpals, Subpals, SubmeNow Test - 17th Feb 18

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Urgent Stock Market Message

Are Stock Market Investors Being Set Up For Another Fall?

Stock-Markets / Stock Markets 2010 Jul 30, 2010 - 01:10 PM GMT

By: Sy_Harding

Stock-Markets In the early 1930’s, after the 1929 crash, Wall Street could not get nervous investors interested in stocks again. However, with interest rates dropped to extreme lows in the Great Depression, those who still had money were eager to invest in something that would provide more income than they could receive on savings accounts. As a result Wall Street had no trouble selling them bonds.


It was later said to have been a slower disaster than the stock market crash, but almost as devastating. Bonds decline in price when interest rates and yields rise. Over the next two decades interest rates began to rise from their extreme lows, and the price of bonds declined. Investors new to bonds discovered it was not a safe haven to be receiving 4% annual interest on bonds if the bonds were dropping 10% in price annually due to rising interest rates.

I bring that up because of reports this week that the major U.S. banks are on a tear to raise huge amounts of low cost capital by issuing bonds while rates are at record lows, and while investor demand for higher returns is on the rise as an alternative to stocks. Some of the low cost capital being raised is being used to pay off the higher cost bonds and debt on their books. Moody’s estimates that U.S. banks have already refinanced $200 billion of the $372 billion in debt that is coming due in 2010.

The Financial Times quotes an executive with one of the big banks as saying, “There’s a bit of a food fight among investors to get hold of paper from U.S. banks.” (It’s not the same situation in Europe where banks need to raise capital but are struggling to issue new debt in the midst of the Eurozone debt crisis).

The large U.S. banks are not the only corporations having an easy time issuing new bonds, benefiting from the flight to safety. Investors have been piling into corporate and treasury bonds for quite some time, and it continues. The Investment Company Institute, which tracks money flows in retail mutual funds, estimates that individual investors pulled another $9 billion from U.S. stock funds in the first three weeks of July, even as the stock market was rallying again, and poured $20 billion more into corporate and government bond funds.

Tom Lee, chief U.S. equity strategist at JP Morgan Chase, speaking at the Reuters Investment Outlook meeting in New York on Wednesday said that, “Retail investors buying bonds today, at a time when the supply of corporate bonds is shrinking . . . they’re chasing a bubble.”

Assuming the issuer does not default on its bonds, an investor will not lose money on individual bonds if they are held to maturity, when the issuer returns the borrowed money to the investor. However, holding to maturity may be difficult, as bond investors discovered in the late 1930’s and 1940’s, once stocks begin producing 10% to 25% in some years, while the 20-year corporate bond will continue to pay only 4.5% or whatever annually to maturity (and meanwhile may be significantly underwater until maturity due to rising interest rates).

As Tom Lee of JP Morgan also said Wednesday, “Have Americans ever been satisfied with earning a steady but low rate of return? What we have in American history is rolling from bubble to bubble, whether it’s stocks, real estate, commodities, emerging markets, time shares . . . when one bubble bursts they are moved to the next one.” Lee implies that the bubble currently forming is in bonds.

But it should be okay as long as the Fed holds interest rates at record low levels near zero for “an extended period of time” as they say they will, and particularly if the stock market has another leg to go on the downside (keeping the appeal of safe havens alive). But investors probably need to be aware of the potential that it is a bond bubble, and be prepared to bail out early when rates and yields begin rising, or if the stock market bottoms and begins a new leg up. With so much money in bonds and bond funds, the exit doors will be crowded when the time comes.

Sy Harding is president of Asset Management Research Corp, publishers of the financial website www.StreetSmartReport.com, and the free daily market blog, www.SyHardingblog.com.

© 2010 Copyright Sy Harding- All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2018 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules