The Fed carefully planted the WSJ "tapering" story in the Friday news dump last week to allow the weekend to smooth it over with investors. Monday's Retail Sales number was good enough to hold the market despite a day with no POMO. To counter, on Tuesday, uber bull hedge fund manager David Tepper was put on CNBC to move the premarket off its decline. This was met with $3.3 Billion of POMO in the morning session. Combined this was enough crack for the bulls to create a panic buy. Oddly, the VIX also rose during the frenzy. Wednesday morning the market noted poor manufacturing data; Empire Manufacturing Index missing at -1.4 from expectation of 3.5; Industrial Production was also a miss at -0.5 from expectation of -0.2 (previous 0.3);; MBA Mortgage index was a big miss at -7.3% from the prior 7.0%. On the flip side, the Housing Market Index rose. France has joined Southern Europe in recession with negative GDP while German GDP was flat. Commodities across the board are deflating. Sounds like all bad news? Nope. The bulls enthusiastically are buying every dip no matter how small. Of all the politicians on earth, Bernanke is the ONE that has never let his flock down.
by David Gillie
Economic data has been a mixed bag this week, The ISM Index was a bad miss and construction spending was a beat on Monday. Auto and truck sales came in in line with expectations and factory orders had a modest rise. This morning's MBA Mortgage Index was a big miss but escaped media attention. ISM services was also a miss. Attention was focused on the ADP Employment Change which was down to 158K from the previous 237K. It's getting soft-peddled on the financial channels as "Under 200K". The Cypress story is over (as far as the media is concerned). Insiders, such as the Russian Oligarchs, were given a "heads up" prior to the 60% confiscation of depositor's funds and 930 million Euros were quickly extracted while the banks were closed to the Cypriot public. TV crews were quickly extracted and the assumption is "Cyprus took it well". Unemployment hit 12% across the Euro Region. However, Europe has clearly become a two tier region with Northern Europe averaging around 6-7% unemployment and Southern Europe suffering 20% unemployment. Meanwhile, China struggles with their economy, Argentina went belly up and Brazil is showing signs of weakness. In the US, bulls are undaunted by bad news and dip-buying is all the rage as the Fed promises to maintain all-time highs in US markets to the tune of $85 Billion a month. "We can't be broke, there's still checks in the checkbook!"
This posting features a comprehensive review of the high yield dividend ETF sector. This view features those dividend related ETFs that have a much more aggressive focus on dividends and yield versus more established sectors. Sometimes the focus on dividends to exclusion of other considerations can lead to trouble. Some of the higher yielding ETFs are sourced from more volatile areas of the world and may focus on previously more troubled sectors like financials where reliability of the dividend stream had been questioned.
In the U.S. and Europe for example, support for many financial institutions from central banks has allowed these institutions to survive the financial crisis thus far.
That said there is a rapidly expanding list of ETFs from which to choose.
In their third estimate of the US GDP for the fourth quarter of 2012 the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the economy was growing at a 0.38% annualized rate, roughly 2.7% worse than the 3.09% growth rate that they recorded for the prior quarter. The new number is 0.24% higher than the previously published estimate for the fourth quarter, but as such it merely represents an improved understanding of historic 4th quarter 2012 economic data and not improved month-to-month economic activity. Although the headline number shows both an upward revision and positive growth, the 0.38% number remains not statistically distinguishable from a stalled economy. The positive revisions came primarily from fixed investments, with "less negative" exports providing an additional boost. Consumer activities were marginally weaker than previously reported, and governmental spending continued to shrink.
GDP Components Table
Annual $ (trillions)
% of GDP
Contribution to GDP Growth %
PAST PERFORMANCE IS NO GUARANTEE OF FUTURE RESULTS.