Demand for agricultural products will continue to grow in coming decades, as rising household incomes prompt consumers in frontier and emerging markets upgrade their diets. But despite the recent hype in Barron’s and other financial publications, many of the agricultural industry’s former high flyers look like value traps in the current market. Cheap stocks can always get cheaper.
Fluctuations in the US dollar's value relative to major international currencies can influence crude-oil prices. But many more important factors are also at play. Right now, elevated oil inventories, resilient US production and the prospect of refinery turnarounds set the stage for seasonal downside in the price of West Texas Intermediate.
The mining industry continues to grapple with persistent oversupplies of many base metals, depressed prices and rising costs. This recent spin-off promises a generous dividend and incremental upside from cost cutting.
Technical factors and weakness in the US economy suggest that the risk of a 5 percent to 10 percent pullback in the S&P 500 continues to rise. As a precaution, we’ve exited a number of positions in recent months, usually for a profit. We highlight several stocks we’re watching for potential inclusion in our Wealth Builders Portfolio.
The long-term growth story for Asia’s emerging markets will gain support from reform efforts under way in China, India and Indonesia. Reasonable valuations in these equity markets create a decent entry point for patient investors who take the long view.
Concerns about slowing economic growth in China, coupled with supply overhangs in many key commodity markets, have weighed on share prices in the mining industry. But bargains abound for income-seeking investors with the patience to wait for a recovery.
Most of our Lifelong Income Portfolio holdings have reported second-quarter results. However, the news flow continues to come fast and furious, with one of our top value plays announcing plans to spin off some of its assets as a new entity. Here’s our take on this strategic move and the latest developments affecting our other picks.
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