Q3 2020 Market Commentary: The Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself

The title of this commentary comes from Franklin D. Roosevelt’s first inaugural address after winning the 1932 presidential election. At the time, the United States was facing many challenges, not the least of which was the Great Depression.

Q2 2020 Market Commentary: Beat the Dealer

You’ve probably never heard of Ed Thorp. He’s a pioneering mathematician who has run several successful hedge funds built around applications of probability theory. While massively successful as an investor, his original claim to fame was a book he wrote about how to win at Blackjack called “Beat the Dealer”.

Things Are Just Getting Started

It is hard to believe that the first case of COVID-19 in the U.S. occurred less than three months ago, on January 20, 2020. While the world was aware of a new virus in China identified earlier in the month, it is unlikely anyone expected to be where we are today.

These Are Interesting Times

When we first heard of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) several months ago, no one could have predicted the measures that have been taken to date. As the virus spreads throughout the world, necessary precautions are being taken to limit the spread of the disease and to prevent overwhelming the health care system.

The End of the Bull Market

We are in the midst of another historic week in equity markets, which started Monday with a shock to oil prices following an unproductive weekend meeting between Saudi Arabia and Russia. Russia’s unwillingness to cut production led to Saudi Arabia flooding the market with oil and pushing oil prices down to nearly $30 a barrel. The S&P was down on Monday -7.6%, partially due to oil prices and partially reflecting ongoing concern about COVID-19.

Coronavirus Update

As the impact of COVID-19 (the coronavirus) continues to spread throughout the globe, investment markets have been fraught with volatility. Since the most recent peak on February 19th, the S&P 500 is down 12.3% through last Friday, and 8.3% for the year. Historically, a drop of 10% or more is considered a market correction, and the most recent occurrence is the fastest in history, occurring in only six days. There have been 27 market corrections since World War II, with an average decline of 13.7% taking an average of four months. To say this past week was unique is an understatement.

MRA Associates Work-From-Home Policy

3/18/2020 – MRA Associates cares about the health and safety of our clients, our MRA team members and their families, and the community. As we continue to navigate this pandemic and do our part to slow the spread of COVID-19, we have implemented a work-from-home policy.

Our firm is well prepared to continue to serve, support, and advise our clients. Team members have remote access to all systems and processes to ensure continued normal business operations. Please help us to do our part by using telephone and video conferencing for meetings with us until the threat of contagion is significantly reduced.

As your trusted financial partner, we are monitoring the current economic environment, discussing approaches to short-term challenges, and developing innovative solutions. Please know that we are available to you for all of your needs and concerns. Please do not hesitate to reach out to our team if you have any questions.

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MRA Associates