Examining Financial Numbers

“One of the funny things about the stock market is that every time one person buys, another sells, and both think they are astute.”
~ William Feather

This week on the Solari Report, I will examine equity markets year-to-date. This report will feature detailed performance charts and sector comparisons.

The equity markets in Q3 proved, yet again, that bull markets do not go up in a straight line. The US market – which has experienced significant gains since 2011 – finally entered the correction zone with the S&P 500 down -6.7% year-to-date. This was not a big swing from the high as the S&P was up 3.4% in Q2.

The large corrections came in Europe and Asia. The German DAX was up 26% for the year in Q2 and then took a swan dive, closing Q3 down -1.5%. The deepest correction came in China with the China Large Cap ETF (FXI) up 28% in April, closing Q3 down -13%.

In my Q2 Equities Overview, I addressed the subject of portfolio risk management. This week (and in our upcoming 3rd Quarter Wrap Up) I will focus on the Chinese stock market. The Chinese equity markets, reestablished after a 40 year hiatus in 1990, have grown in 25 years to a market capitalization of $7 trillion USD (or $10 trillion if you include the Hong Kong exchange) – approximately 10% of global equity market capitalization.

As always, I will be addressing  questions from subscribers in Ask Catherine. If you’re a subscriber, you can post your questions at the bottom of this page after logging in.

In Let’s Go to The Movies I will discuss David Versus Monsanto, a documentary exploring Canadian farmer Percy Schmeiser’s battle with the corporate giant, Monsanto. The recent ban on GMO’s by Scotland, Germany, France and other European countries is a major setback to the US plan to assert control of the global agricultural market. That has implications for both financial markets and the US dollar as reserve currency.

Please join me for the Solari Report’s Q3 Equity Overview this Thursday. If you’re not a subscriber yet, you can learn more about becoming one here.


Published on Oct 4, 2015
The world is facing some huge problems. There’s a lot of talk about how to solve them. But talk doesn’t reduce pollution, or grow food, or heal the sick. That takes doing. This film is the story about a group of doers, the elegantly simple inventions they have made to change the lives of billions of people, and the unconventional billionaire spearheading the project.

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Billions in Change



As America’s economic supremacy fades, the primacy of the dollar looks unsustainable

IF HEGEMONS are good for anything, it is for conferring stability on the systems they dominate. For 70 years the dollar has been the superpower of the financial and monetary system. Despite talk of the yuan’s rise, the primacy of the greenback is unchallenged. As a means of payment, a store of value and a reserve asset, nothing can touch it. Yet the dollar’s rule has brittle foundations, and the system it underpins is unstable. Worse, the alternative reserve currencies are flawed. A transition to a more secure order will be devilishly hard.

When the buck stops
For decades, America’s economic might legitimised the dollar’s claims to reign supreme. But, as our special report this week explains, a faultline has opened between America’s economic clout and its financial muscle. The United States accounts for 23% of global GDP and 12% of merchandise trade. Yet about 60% of the world’s output, and a similar share of the planet’s people, lie within a de facto dollar zone, in which currencies are pegged to the dollar or move in some sympathy with it. American firms’ share of the stock of international corporate investment has fallen from 39% in 1999 to 24% today. But Wall Street sets the rhythm of markets globally more than it ever did. American fund managers run 55% of the world’s assets under management, up from 44% a decade ago.

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Just the facts

[CAF Note: This was published in December 2012. I am republishing today, in October 2015, as the debate in the US is sadly short of facts, not to mention an understanding or analysis of covert operations with respect to the illegal gun trade and gun crimes in America.]

As the specter of federal gun control legislation in 2013 rises, the debate is being defined primarily by fiction, rather than fact. For those interested in shifting the debate to fact, including serious statistics and analysis of the impact of gun ownership and governmental policies related to gun ownership, I strongly recommend Gary Kleck’s Point Blank: Guns and Violence in America. Kleck is professor of criminology and criminal justice at Florida State University. Originally published in 1993, Point Blank won the Michael J. Hindelang Award of the American Society of Criminology for the book that “made the most outstanding contribution to criminology.”

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