I really liked this paragraph from Bill Gross in his latest letter:
“Investors should recognize that asset and currency prices ultimately rest on the ability of a real economy to grow. If growth cannot be boosted by monetary policy, and fiscal policy is in the hands of a plutocracy more concerned about immediate profits as opposed to long-term vitality, then no Genie or Flavor Flav with a magic clock can make a difference. If, therefore, real economic growth is stunted in the United States and globally, then portfolio strategies should acknowledge bite-sized future returns and the growing risk that the negative consequences of misguided monetary and fiscal policy might lead to disruptive financial markets at some future point. The approaching fiscal cliff might be the first of a series of future disruptions. Although PIMCO expects a middle ground fiscal compromise from Washington, when that is combined with the fading influence of QE monetary policies, it leads only temporarily to 2% real growth in the U.S. at best – growth that is clearly not “Old Normal.” We are in a “New Normal” world where the negative effects of private sector deleveraging are only being weakly addressed by monetary and fiscal authorities. If so, then Treasury yields should stay low and my money market fund should continue to read “.01%.” The “cult” of equity – or better yet the cult of “total return” – for both bonds and stocks – is over, if that definition presumes a resumption of historical patterns anywhere close to double digits. The era of financial repression continues. “
There a lot of moving parts there, but it’s pretty succinct in its general message. Read the rest here….