Just last week, one financial industry veteran warned of “devastating losses” should a yield-curve inversion usher in the next recession. As you can see by this chart, that’s been a bankable signal over the past three decades:
Jeffrey Gundlach’s not nearly as pessimistic about the prospect of a flattening or inverting yield curve, but the billionaire founder of DoubleLine Capital isn’t exactly bubbling over, either.
The “Bond King” told Barron’s that every indicator he follows flashed positive to start the year, but now that we’re halfway through 2018, the outlook’s not so rosy and investors need to be cautious.
“There’s a narrative out there that says the flattening yield curve isn’t sending any message about a recession, and that couldn’t be more wrong,” he said. “In fact, with rates so low, the yield curve signal is even stronger than usual.”
Gundlach warns that this closely watched signal is flashing yellow and needs to be respected as we edge ever closer to a recession. The ramping up of quantitative tightening isn’t helping, he says.
“It’s like a death wish,” Gundlach explains. “The U.S. is taking on hundreds of billions of dollars of debt while raising rates, which means our debt-service payments are going to be under serious pressure to the upside.”
So how should we play it?
In our call of the day, Gundlach recommends the Invesco Senior Loan ETF
along with the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF
. That first fund offers exposure to senior loans issued by banks, while the other tracks a rallying group of energy stocks.
Investors heeding his advice this time around are hoping his picks fare better than the ones he made for Barron’s back in January. As you can see in this breakdown, both iShares MSCI Brazil
and Tortoise MLP
are in the red since early in the year.
Still, Gundlach urges patience with both, considering their bargain levels.
Overall, he told Barron’s that he sees a “middling year” for the stock market — and then a sketchier 2019.
“Everything seemed magical in January, what with synchronized global growth and markets accelerating to the upside,” he said. “We haven’t been able to get back to that frame of mind since February — or that market level.”
“Be conservative,” he also said.
That magic feeling clearly isn’t in the air today, with the S&P
both trading lower. The Dow
however, managed to peak into positive territory, but just barely. Gold
also slipped, as did silver
closed sharply lower. Europe
ended mixed, while Asia markets
finished mostly down. In cryptos, bitcoin
moved past $6,600.
See the Market Snapshot column for the latest action.
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Source : MTV