John Hussman: Little To Be Optimistic About

by: John Hussman

Excerpt from fund manager John Hussman's weekly essay on the US market:

The chart below is the in-house “advance-decline line” of economic surprises (actual figures versus consensus estimates) that we maintain on a variety of inflation and growth statistics (employment, inflation, GDP, etc). Note that since early May, inflation reports have been relentlessly above expectations, while growth reports have been largely disappointments. This is picture-perfect stagflation.

...we should not be surprised to observe stagflation, falling stocks, weak profits, flat bonds, and a dollar crisis in the months ahead.

... my opinion is that the major stock market indices are vulnerable here. I tend to be an optimistic realist, but aside from hedging positions (market-neutral investment positions, inflation-protected securities, precious metals, etc), there is presently little in the financial markets to be realistically optimistic about.