Private Equity

Howard Marks Redux: "There They Go Again" - Why Stock Investors Develop Amnesia

"Contributing to... euphoria... is the extreme brevity of the financial memory... There can be few fields of human endeavor in which history counts for so little as in the world of finance. Past experience, to the extent that it is part of memory at all, is dismissed as the primitive refuge of those who do not have the insight to appreciate the incredible wonders of the present."

Passive Aggressive Pigs Get Slaughtered

"Most of the money supporting ETF asset growth is coming from investors ignorant (or willfully ignorant) of risk. As with active investing, ETFs provide mostly long exposure. Unlike active investing, the higher cap-weighted indexes move beyond sustainable value, the more likely ETFs will disappoint investors."

Frontrunning: March 21

  • Gorsuch Strives to Present Himself as Above Political Fray (WSJ)
  • Investigation Could Hurt Trump’s Clout in Congress (WSJ)
  • U.S. to Ban Laptops and Tablets in Cabins of Some Mideast Flights (BBG)
  • Tillerson no-show at NATO renews European disquiet about Trump (Reuters)
  • Don’t Blame Your Social Media Feed for the Growing Political Divide (BBG)
  • High-Frequency Traders Fall on Hard Times (WSJ)

Credit Suisse "Climbs The Wall Of Worry", Raises S&P Target To 2,500 From 2,350

"Following the reaching of our mid-year S&P 500 target, we raise both our mid-year and year-end S&P targets to 2,400 and 2,500, respectively (from 2,350 and 2,300). We continue to see a clear-cut risk that we get an overshoot to the upside in equities that then reverses later on; more realistically, this reversal is likely to be a very late-2017 or 2018 event." - Credit Suisse

Frontrunning: March 16

  • Fed's 'dovish hike' sends shares to record highs, dollar dips (Reuters); Markets Rally After Fed Rate Increase Decision (BBG)
  • Yellen Calms Fears Fed’s Policy Trigger Finger Is Getting Itchy (BBG)
  • Europe Gets Reprieve in Dutch Election, But the Center Fragments (BBG); Relief in EU capitals as Dutch PM sees off far-right's Wilders (Reuters)
  • Trump's first budget: military wins; environment, aid lose (Reuters)
  • Trump Says He Based Charge of Obama Wiretapping on Media Reports (BBG)

This Is What Happens When Private Equity Firms Run Out Of Things To Buy

What do you do when you're part of an industry that has levered up $100's of billions of dollars in investor capital and paid a handsome premium for pretty much every asset available all while "excess cash sits on the sidelines" because there are just no deals left to do at remotely attractive valuations?  Well, just as Investindustrial...

Frontrunning: March 8

  • GOP Disagrees on How—and Whether—to Pay for Tax Cuts (WSJ)
  • 'It's like kumbaya:' Trump's genial private meetings with CEOs jar with public attacks (Reuters)
  • New Health Plan Sparks Debate Over Obamacare Comparisons (WSJ)
  • China Grants Preliminary Approval to 38 New Trump Trademarks (BBG)
  • Questions About Loyalty to Trump Stall Treasury Picks (BBG)
  • Women in U.S. plan to stay off the job, rally in anti-Trump protests (Reuters)

Frontrunning: March 2

  • Data-Dependent Yellen Running Out of Reasons to Hold Rates Still (BBG)
  • Dollar rises, global stocks hold highs on March Fed rate hike bets (Reuters)
  • Pelosi calls on Sessions to quit after Post discloses Russia contacts (Reuters)
  • Euro-Area Inflation Hits 2 Percent as ECB Debates Policy (BBG)
  • Snap IPO Values Company at Twice Facebook’s Multiple  (BBG)
  • SEC advisory committee to question Snap's transparency for investors (Reuters)

SEC Freezes Accounts Of "Highly Suspicious" Traders Who Made $3.6 Million On Fortress Takeover

The SEC has frozen the the accounts of several traders who made more than $3.6 million in profits by trading stocks and call before the $3.3bn takeover of Fortress Investment Group was announced by Japan’s SoftBank. The unknown traders placed the “highly suspicious” orders for shares and contracts for difference, or CFDs, through Maybank Securities and R.J. O’Brien, according to the SEC.

Energy, Money, And The Destruction Of Equilibrium

"No matter what the economic leaders say, these actions prove to me and many others that their mental models of the world have failed. They’re able to hide behind authority and academic vocabulary which if put in plain terms for the lay person could be described as theft, ponzi, tyrannical and moronic."

Number Of Distressed US Retailers Highest Since The Great Recession

"Moody's-rated US retailers rated Caa or Ca today make up just over 13% of our total rated retail portfolio, which is the highest level since the Great Recession.  As they struggle to survive, distressed retailers can take more desperate measures, including highly promotional pricing that can border on irrational.  This leaves stronger firms with the choice of either competing in a race to the bottom, or giving up sales in order to preserve margin."