Sunday, December 8, 2019

How far can Tariff Man dent the stock market?

Preface: Explaining our market timing models
We maintain several market timing models, each with differing time horizons. The "Ultimate Market Timing Model" is a long-term market timing model based on the research outlined in our post, Building the ultimate market timing model. This model tends to generate only a handful of signals each decade.

The Trend Asset Allocation Model is an asset allocation model which applies trend following principles based on the inputs of global stock and commodity price. This model has a shorter time horizon and tends to turn over about 4-6 times a year. In essence, it seeks to answer the question, "Is the trend in the global economy expansion (bullish) or contraction (bearish)?"

My inner trader uses a trading model, which is a blend of price momentum (is the Trend Model becoming more bullish, or bearish?) and overbought/oversold extremes (don't buy if the trend is overbought, and vice versa). Subscribers receive real-time alerts of model changes, and a hypothetical trading record of the those email alerts are updated weekly here. The hypothetical trading record of the trading model of the real-time alerts that began in March 2016 is shown below.

The latest signals of each model are as follows:
  • Ultimate market timing model: Buy equities*
  • Trend Model signal: Bullish*
  • Trading model: Bearish*
* The performance chart and model readings have been delayed by a week out of respect to our paying subscribers.

Update schedule: I generally update model readings on my site on weekends and tweet mid-week observations at @humblestudent. Subscribers receive real-time alerts of trading model changes, and a hypothetical trading record of the those email alerts is shown here. As well, please join and "like" our Facebook page here.

Tariff Man returns
The markets took on a decided risk-off tone early last Monday when President Trump, aka the Tariff Man, made an early morning tweet to announce steel and aluminum tariffs on Brazil and Argentina.

The markets took further fright based on Trump's comment that he had no timetable for a trade deal with China, and he was willing to wait until after the 2020 election to conclude an agreement. More importantly, Edward Lawrence of Fox Business reported that there are no current plans to delay the next round of tariffs scheduled for December 15, which is an unanticipated development as the market consensus was they would be delayed.

If the December 15 tariffs are enacted, what is the expected damage? How will that affect my thesis of a cyclical rebound (see An upcoming seismic shift in factor returns)?

The full post can be found here.

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