2012 Letters to Clients

FOURTH QUARTER 2012
As we consider the year that has just concluded, the predominant theme for 2012 seems to have been “The Year of Gloom & Doom.”

For much of the year, the U.S. economy teetered between recession and slow growth. Concerns over the Eurozone economies continued unabated. The election season proved to be perhaps the most contentious ever. All in all the headlines were downright depressing. (Though, on the bright side, the Mayans proved to be poor apocalypse predictors.) Read More »


THIRD QUARTER 2012

“Stocks climb a wall of worry.”

Of all the pithy sayings that have evolved about investing over the years, perhaps none are truer than that one. Stocks historically trudge along on their inexorable upward climb despite the occasional setbacks and incessant negativity of the media. It is easy enough to see in retrospect, of course. The challenging part is believing it going forward. Read More »

 

SECOND QUARTER 2012
America will halve its reliance on Middle East oil by the end of this decade and could end it completely by 2035 due to declining demand and the rapid growth of new petroleum sources in the Western Hemisphere, energy analysts now anticipate.

- From a Wall Street Journal email news alert, June 26, 2012

Say, remember “Peak Oil Theory”?

It was, and still is, the theory that global oil production has peaked, and that the world’s oil fields are going to be producing successively less of the black gold in the years to come. Peak Oil was all the rage back in 2007, when oil prices surged to about $150 a barrel and the world seemed to be on an inevitable path to consuming more and more oil until the fields just ran out. Read More »

 

FIRST QUARTER 2012
Just over three years ago – on March 9, 2009 specifically – the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed for the day at 6,547.

It would mark the beginning of the greatest investment opportunity in a generation.

Don’t recall it that way? Not many people do. Up to that point, stocks had been in an uninterrupted free fall. After clawing its way back to the 9,000 level at the end of 2008, the Dow began 2009 by posting declines on 29 of the first 45 trading days for a total decline of 27% in just 10 weeks. This was on top of the already 25% decline the Dow experienced in the last three months of 2008. Read More »