We’ve been warning all month that there is no longer a reason to buy US stocks. With the Trump administration distracted by any number of secondary issues and no clear path to a tax bill, the priced-to-perfection valuation of the S&P 500 looks tippy.
The American stock market is an accident waiting to happen. A retail meltdown led the S&P lower this morning. The department stores index was down more than 8% led by Macy’s, and retail REITS continued to lose ground.
Sogginess in today’s stock market is particularly noteworthy given today’s rebound in oil and commodity prices, which has given impetus to equities in both directions for a good deal of this year. There simply are too many social media companies, too many retail companies, and (probably) too many automakers.
Investors have the choice of paying huge valuations for Amazon, or buy the competitors whose business it absorbs–or buying Facebook rather than Yelp, for example. Before Trump was elected there were a few great sectoral stories — undervalued financials and capital goods makers.