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Daily RAG Recommendation Sample, 22nd January 2024:

The Daily RAG publication comes out every business day before 9:30am London time, and includes a 1 – 2 week LONG or SHORT recommendation on equity index futures, typically S&P500 futures. The publication also features an overview of global market movements, economic and political events, key macro data releases and a summary of the message generated by our suite of proprietary models.

"Increase LONG SPX position" 

"...After consolidating their gains for a number of weeks, US equity markets broke out above of their sideways trading ranges on Friday (see FIGs 1 – 1b). That move higher was led by growth/tech heavy parts of the market, with strong gains in the Nasdaq100 (+2.0%), Nasdaq Computer index (+2.4%); and the Philly SOX (+4.0%), while the S&P500 closed up 1.3%.  

Price action in US equities has therefore been encouraging for the bulls, and is consistent with the thesis laid out in recent Daily RAG publications (i.e. that the uptrend in US equities is resuming, after pausing for breadth in December/January).  

Of note, and despite strong gains in equities in recent trading sessions, our short term models, having recently generated BUY signals, are still mostly mid-range (i.e. not yet back on SELL). From a models’ perspective, therefore, there’s headroom for further near term gains in equities. Our risk appetite models, for example, are neutral (having been on BUY, see FIGs 2 & 2a); while various technical, volatility, and breadth models are broadly mid-range (having mostly been on BUY in recent days/weeks, e.g. see FIGs 2b – 2e). With that, certain key short term models continue to lean towards BUY (e.g. see FIG 1c), while a number of medium term models are also close to BUY (e.g. see FIG 1g).  


The Short View Sample, 16th January 2024:

The Short View is primarily about recent, short term market movements in key asset classes (equities, bonds, rates, currencies, commodities and volatility). Much of the thinking in the product is based on positioning and sentiment shifts. The product draws upon the Commodities Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) ‘Commitments Of Traders’ report (COT), which is published each week. We use the data in this report that relates to speculators, and include it as part of our analysis of recent market price action across key asset classes (and then outline our conclusions in the Short View publication).

"OIL: Breakout Ahead"

"Price action in oil has been encouraging for the bulls in recent months (although less so today). In particular, the Brent price tested, and rallied from, a key level ($71.60/barrel) last month. That price had been tested (and held) on five prior occasions (in March, May, and June last year), see FIG A. As a general rule of thumb, when key levels are tested and held multiple times, they are considered to be strong technical levels. Of interest, price action is similar in the WTI benchmark (with futures testing/rallying from around 

Since rallying from that level, oil prices have formed a pennant pattern (with lower highs and higher lows in December and January), FIG A. Broadly speaking, that pattern has formed just below the 50 day moving average (the key technical resistance level for oil).

With oil prices now at the end of their pennant, the key question becomes: Which way will they break?"


Tactical Equity Asset Allocation Sample No. 240,
3rd January 2024:

The Tactical Equity Asset Allocation is an explicit recommendation on the outlook for the S&P500 Index on a one to four month horizon. Those recommendations are based on our suite of medium-term quantitative models, as well as our analysis of the US and global economic cycle.

"Stay Tactically OW Equities
(albeit risks rising)
a.k.a. Cyclical Bull Market Ongoing"

“Since the late October lows, US and global equity markets have moved  sharply higher, performing strongly in November and December. The S&P500,  for example, having troughed on 27th October (at 4,103) has subsequently rallied  17%. The NASDAQ100, after its July to October ‘summer swoon’, reached a local  low on 26th October and has since rallied around 20% (up to its end 2023 highs). Other global equity markets have behaved similarly. 

That strength in equities, in such a short period of time, raises questions about where to next?"


Extract from Quarterly Asset Allocation No. 56,
21st December 2023:

The Quarterly Global Asset Allocation is a recommendation for a global portfolio comprised of equities, bonds, commodities, credit and cash with a six to twenty four month investment horizon. The recommendation is based on our assessment of the global economic cycle, the current key investment/macro themes, our assessment of market valuation and analysis of other key factors which drive medium to long term investment cycles. Each quarter there is a section with a detailed analysis of the economic cycle in the USA, Eurozone and China. There is also a section dedicated to valuation across all key asset classes, as well as a front section with detailed recommendations and rationale.

"Implementing Thematic Bets in 
Strategic Portfolio
a.k.a. Downgrading US Recession Risk"

"We are shifting our recession probability from above 50% to below 50%. That  is, we have assigned a 65% probability to ‘no US recession in 2024’. As such, and while the possibility of a recession in 2024 is not completely off the table, it’s not our central case. For that reason (and others as outlined below), the risk reward, therefore, favours making changes to our strategic portfolio this quarter. Those changes are laid out below.

The rationale reflects the Fed’s decisive policy shift last week (from ‘higher for longer’, to expecting to loosen in 2024), as well as a number of other factors."


Global Macro Report Sample, 10th May 2023:

In our Global Macro Reports we identify and explore key macro themes & the outlook for major economies. The reports frequently examine the US, Eurozone & China and, occasionally, other major economies.

"EZ Inflation: How Sticky is it… Really?"

"The widely held view in markets is that (i) the Eurozone growth outlook is relatively robust (e.g. compared to the US); and, somewhat linked to that, (ii) inflation is sticky, with inflation risks skewed to the upside. The conclusion, therefore, is that further ECB tightening is likely & necessary in 2H this year.

That view was reiterated by Lagarde at last week’s press conference. It’s also reflected in rates markets, which are priced for another 35bps of ECB hikes by September (and only 85bps of cuts next year*). In the US, in contrast, the market is priced for 54bps of cuts by year end (from a peak in May), with another 149bps by the end of next year.

The key question, therefore, is: Have markets priced Eurozone inflation and growth correctly? Is Eurozone inflation sticky (or indeed stickier than the US)? And, how quickly will it fall (if at all)?"


Longview Letter Sample, 26th July 2023:

Longview Letters look in depth at key long term themes which relate to the outlook for global financial markets & the global economy. These thematic pieces aim to provoke thinking and often form the basis for podcasts and newspaper editorials.

“UK Housing: The ‘Winner’s Curse’ Phase
a.k.a. House prices: The 1 – 3 year outlook”

“The popular view in markets is that UK house prices are going to go significantly lower. Knight Frank (property specialist) expect them to fall by 10% over two years (quote above); Savills (key competitor of KF) are looking for 10% falls in 2023, followed by a 1% gain in 2024 and a 3.5% gain in 2025. Lloyds, meanwhile, expect UK prices to fall by 6.9% in 2023 & a further 1.2% in 2024 (before recovering slowly from 2025 and beyond).

It’s easy to have a lot of sympathy with that view: Housing is very expensive – as we show in appendix A. Based on house price to income ratios, UK housing is trading close to historic 100 year high multiples; from a regional perspective,  the conclusion is similar (appendix B); examined from the perspective of rental yields against mortgage funding costs, the yield gap is low (i.e. not much pick up above funding costs – fig 2b); while affordability ratios for first time buyers 
have also deteriorated notably in the past 11 quarters (FIG 1). 

Added to that, mortgage credit conditions are tight (FIG 4a) with new mortgage approvals trending at around 40 – 50k per month. That’s at levels similar to those seen in the depths of the GFC and the pandemic (FIG 1a).


Commodity Fundamentals Report No. 176,
1st February 2024:

Commodities Fundamentals Reports provide deep analysis of the supply and demand dynamics for key commodities. We provide regular updates to our outlook on oil, gold, and copper; and infrequent analysis on silver, iron ore, agricultural commodities and energy.

“Gold Price Drivers: All Change”

“In 2022, the traditional gold price drivers started changing. 

The correlation of our multifactor model with the gold price, for example, started to break down that year (NB this model has been highly correlated with gold since pre GFC – see fig 1). As rates rose in 2022/23, the dollar strengthened and TIPS yields picked up, yet the gold price stayed broadly rangebound (between $1,600 – $2,100). That model, though, given such sharp rate hikes, suggests that a fair value for gold is considerably lower, around $500 - $1000 (see fig 1 below).

Added to that, the traditionally tight correlation of gold investment demand flows with the price has also broken down. This is illustrated in fig 2 which shows the level of physical gold holdings in gold backed ETFs correlated with the gold price. As the chart shows, the two typically move tightly together. Since late 2022, these two lines have diverged, with ~310 tonnes of gold leaving ETFs over that time. Similarly, a broader measure of investment demand (which incorporates ETFs) has also diverged (see fig 7, NB it’s quarterly data). 


LV on Friday Sample, 24th November 2023:

The Longview on Friday brings together every aspect of Longview's weekly analysis and strategic investment advice. The report updates key themes, outlines crucial trading advice and drills deep into the most relevant market movements and macro trends. The Longview on Friday has successfully predicted and remained ahead of key global trends. The report identifies the key themes that will drive global markets in the short and long term.

“China: More Extend and Pretend –
Lessons from the Housing Sector”

"China is 2 ½ years into a major housing bust. Property transactions are down over 50% from their peak, and back at 2009/10 levels, while prices are sharply lower in many parts of China (reportedly up to 50% in tier 3 and 4 cities according to some sources). Clearance rates, meanwhile, are at record highs in terms of number of months in tier 2 and 3 cities (see FIG 3). On top of which, both Evergrande and Country Garden have gone bankrupt (with Evergrande losing more money in the past two and a half years than it has ever made cumulatively – see FIG 4).

In that vein, it was fascinating to spend 2 hours with CIFI Holdings (Group) Co Ltd (884: HKG) in Shanghai earlier this month. CIFI are a major private developer, based in Shanghai, which has defaulted on its offshore debt, has been delisted (and just relisted), but officially remains solvent (although if a western accounting approach was applied, it’s highly likely it would be considered bankrupt).

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