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The Real World

Updated: Jul 20, 2023

Jim Cramer was on CNBC last week and said it really well. “The real world is much worse than the stock market indicates.”

Last week’s trading action was more than a little frothy. Thursday was as stock-buying frenzy on NO news. We’re very hard-pressed to find a company that is having a better quarter than they had last quarter. Companies from numerous industries, from the retail, lending, materials and housing markets, have noted increasing pressure from Washington and Beijing placing billions of dollars worth of punitive tariffs on each other’s imports.

Who can raise prices in this environment? We’re not aware of anybody. And there’s no indication that we won’t have tariffs going forward. The G20 begins this week and will be interesting for a variety of reasons, but we don’t see any reason to expect a watershed moment for trade.

Car loads at all the railroads are down. U.S. rail traffic dipped again last week and is now down 2.8% for the year, according to data from the Association of American Railroads.

Plus, one doesn’t have to make their living as a mutual fund manager to notice that the stocks going up lately are the ones that go up when we expect a recession. The MSCI REIT index is up more than 20% this year. Utility stocks are on fire. Proctor and Gamble is up 9% just for the month.

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