Mixed Signals Abound

 | Aug 01, 2014 | 3:53 PM EDT  | Comments
  • Comment
  • Print Print
  • Print

When are we ever going to stop being so Fed-centric when it comes to what principally drives stocks? It's profits. Both the macro and the bond and stock futures players don't ever have to worry about a conference call or an earnings estimate. They just like to holler and scream about whether Fed Chief Janet Yellen is ahead of or behind the curve. I get that. They don't relate it to companies because they are all up at 30,000 feet.

Me? I am on the ground and I can tell you that Russia is in control right now. The numbers of the industrials are clearly going to have to come down if things don't resolve themselves.

Now, I don't blame the people who yell about bonds for being confused or negative about Yellen's Federal Reserve. I want the Fed to be selling bonds into strength and moving on. The Fed doesn't need to raise the fed funds rate yet but it should be prepping us more in case the economy heats up.

But we are now getting enough mixed signals about the end of July that there is reason to be concerned that the economy is weakening again. The jury's still out.

However, the jury is not out on Russia. We have entered into uncertain times for companies that weren't expecting or seeing a Ukraine issue as recently as Sochi. Plus, the blind fealty we have to Ukraine seems odd to many. And if you didn't know any better, it's as if the powers that be cut a deal over a stronger dollar in order to create a coalition against Russian President Vladimir Putin.

No matter. Believe what you want. But if you think profits matter, then you need Ukraine resolved. If you think Yellen is all that matters, then you obviously don't care about stocks anyway, at least individual ones. Either that, or you are too lazy to care and you default to polemics, ideology and something that you don't need to do any homework on.

Columnist Conversations

Conclusion Let's find the companies with the greatest revenue growth and highest gross margins in the mega cap...
Market has strengthened since mid-day. Energy sector is one of the strongest of the day as WTI has moved up s...
October puts on both Royal Caribbean and Carnival Cruise (CCL) are seeing interest Tuesday. RCL is up 58 cents...
Pier 1 Imports has been scraping along the bottom of its 52 week range for ten weeks. Back in late June ...

BEST IDEAS

REAL MONEY'S BEST IDEAS

Columnist Tweets

BROKERAGE PARTNERS

Except as otherwise indicated, quotes are delayed. Quotes delayed at least 20 minutes for all exchanges. Market Data provided by Interactive Data. Company fundamental data provided by Morningstar. Earnings and ratings provided by Zacks. Mutual fund data provided by Valueline. ETF data provided by Lipper. Powered and implemented by Interactive Data Managed Solutions.


TheStreet Ratings updates stock ratings daily. However, if no rating change occurs, the data on this page does not update. The data does update after 90 days if no rating change occurs within that time period.

IDC calculates the Market Cap for the basic symbol to include common shares only. Year-to-date mutual fund returns are calculated on a monthly basis by Value Line and posted mid-month.