Sigma Signals

Week of March 20, 2023 On the heels of the second largest bank failure in US history, we see even greater consolidation of European banks to rehabilitate trust in the banking system. The Biden White House, US Congress and leadership in Federal agencies are discussing changes to address higher deposit insurance limits and the duration … Continued

“Beware of ——- Bearing Gifts”

Government subsidies are never free and now we’re learning the price that semiconductor companies will have to pay if they choose to sign on to the administration’s industrial policy. The recent rollout of the federal $53 billion semiconductor program (Chips) marks an historic effort to use government resources to foster favored sectors.  It should be … Continued

Sigma Signals

Week of March 13, 2023 The dramatic and rapid failure of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) last week focused attention on the Fed’s restrictive monetary policy with an understanding that a casualty of this nature was not unexpected. It would appear that the Fed will continue to maintain its inflation fighting posture while simultaneously throwing a … Continued

Too Much of a Good Thing

California has had a water problem since recorded time, as discussed in our blog of January 28, 2016, “Water, Water, Everywhere…But Not a drop to Drink.” Typically, winter rain and snow provide much of the water used by Californians throughout the year.  Recently, the state has suffered through several years of drought.  One measure of … Continued

Sigma Signals

Week of March 6, 2023 Last week we referenced the revolutionary advances for humankind that will likely be advanced by the wonders of artificial intelligence (AI). This week we direct attention to an article in the Wall Street Journal dated February 25, 2023 entitled “ChatGPT Heralds an Intellectual Revolution.” Lead author Henry Kissinger (amazingly intellectually … Continued

Daycare, Healthcare and Staffing

While quite different, both are under severe pressure as demand for services far exceeds supply.  Both are finding it very difficult to attract enough employees to maintain historical levels of service, to say nothing of the difficulties associated with expanding to meet increasing demand. The lack of reliable, affordable, quality day care is a serious … Continued

Sigma Signals

Week of February 27, 2023 In the history of the world, there have been perhaps 6 major developments that profoundly changed the arc of wellness for mankind. To wit: the Gutenberg printing press, electricity, Arabic numeral system, the internal combustion engine, modern aeronautics and computer chips. We are now ushering in the next – artificial … Continued

Be Careful What You Ask For – China Edition

A recent article in The New York Times addressed China’s declining population.  The article noted that a fertility rate of approximately 2.1 children per woman is the minimum, without immigration, needed for the population to remain stable.  Recent data suggests that China’s fertility rate has dropped to 1.2, among the lowest in the world.  China … Continued

Sigma Signals

Week of February 20, 2023 The art and science of investing is always a contest between long-term goals and short-term events. It is easy to lose sight of the long-term when encountering particularly fear-provoking issues. A focus on historical returns often helps to control one’s emotions and the ability to adhere to strategy. No changes … Continued

Sigma Signals

Week of February 13, 2023 Last week we suggested a tilt into international stock ETF’s. The Wall Street Journal published an article this week titled “Investors Flee U.S. Stock Funds” and too noted the interest in non-U.S. equities. The trend might have short term “legs” but it would be appropriate to monitor underlying economic and … Continued

ESG, Meet Fiduciary

ESG (environmental, social, and corporate governance) is a framework designed to be embedded into an organization’s strategy that considers the needs and ways in which to generate value for all of the organizational stakeholders, including, employees, customers, suppliers and investors.  A fiduciary is a person or organization that holds a legal or ethical relationship that … Continued

Sigma Signals

Week of February 6, 2023 Given the myriad concerns that enveloped global capital markets during the past 12 months – Russian invasion of Ukraine, US midterm elections, China intimidation of Taiwan, a restive Fed committed to fight inflation – it is not unusual that volatility pervades. However, after touching an interim low last October, the … Continued