Jeff Benjamin

Investment Insights: The Blogblog

Jeff Benjamin breaks down the game for advisers and clients.

Oct 7, 2014

Wanted: Gold bears

By Jeff Benjamin

Friday's big drop in gold didn't lead to more bearishness and that's not necessarily a good sign. Gold market sentiment takes a big turn for the worseStructuring client portfolios for retirement is not easy. Here are some ideas. Top fund ideas for retirement bucket portfoliosAbout that breach at JPMorgan: The big bank wasn't alone. JPMorgan hackers attempted to infiltrate other financial institutionsIt's going to be a long fourth quarter for that bond manager in Newport Beach, Calif. Pimco's outflow headaches only just beginningA big, big, big real estate deal in the Big Apple. Hilton to sell Waldorf Astoria to Chinese investors for $1.95B Here's an event you should try not to miss, if you're in the right place. Rocking the red: A lunar eclipse bathes the moon in color Wednesday morning... Read full post

Oct 6, 2014

Bring on the competition: Gross

By Jeff Benjamin

In an interview with InvestmentNews, Bill Gross, now a portfolio manager at Janus, says he's ready to take on his rivals. Gross speaks out on Pimco exit, vows to regain crown at Janus Back at Pimco, the firm suffered record outflows in September, raising the question: Where did that money go? Pimco losing assets to DoubleLine, Metwest, BlackRock others The stock market rally might be a house of cards. S&P 500 companies spend almost all profits on buybacks, payouts Here's a stock market indicator you might not be watching. Is a stock market crash coming? The dental indicator says yes. It's baaaack! And ugly as ever. Bitcoin has been getting obliterated Another company jumps on the business strategy du jour bandwagon. Hewlett-Packard to split in two, seeking to remain competitive ... Read full post

Oct 3, 2014

Pimco is losing assets to DoubleLine, MetWest, BlackRock and others

By Jeff Benjamin

Right or wrong, the market has been loud and clear over the past week that it believes Bill Gross' sudden departure from Pimco marked the ultimate sell signal for the Pimco Total Return Fund (PTTAX).The big issue now is where that money will land and why.Spoiler alert: Mr. Gross and unconstrained bond funds are part of the answer.The world's largest bond fund reported $23.5 billion in outflows for September. Dropping the asset level to $198 billion, that amount was nearly seven times the $3.5 billion that exited the fund in August.Lipper Inc. analyst Jeff Tjornehoj logically concluded that $20 billion had raced out of the fund during the final three trading days of September, after Mr. Gross resigned Sept. 26. “Before the announcement, we assumed the outflows for September would be similar to August,” Mr. Tjornehoj said. “I've never seen anything like this.”BLEEDING ASSETSAnd, keep in mind, we're talking about... Read full post

Oct 3, 2014

Pimco boss shrugs off Gross' exit

By Jeff Benjamin

Pimco CEO says the big beachside bond shop has already moved past Bill Gross. Nothing to see here, folks. It's all good in the neighborhood. 'Our DNA is fundamentally unchanged' after Gross A bullish sign for stocks. The big-money investors are getting in position to pounce on the stock market pullback. Options traders have started making bullish wagers. The JPMorgan Chase data breach has compromised 76 million households and 7 million small businesses. The hackers have your name, address, phone numbers and e-mail addresses, but they don't have your passwords, yet. The pace of data breaches has ramped up. IPOs and M&A deals are both pointing to signs of a stock market bubble. Coincidentally, this is how things looked just before the 2008 financial crisis. Twin peaks Inventions that might not have been the children of necessity. Did the world really need buffalo wing soda, pajama jeans and pumpkin spice hummus? ... Read full post

Oct 2, 2014

Pimco Total Return takes big hit

By Jeff Benjamin

What happened with Bill Gross left Pimco? Cash, and lots of it, followed. Total Return Fund records largest redemptions in its history But all that cash might not be moving with him to Janus. 4 better alternatives to Bill Gross and Pimco A new robo adviser hits the market, this one with some cache. Ritholtz Wealth Management launches robo platform Wait. What? Corporate U.S. healthiest in decades under Obama with lower debt Oil prices are falling hard and there are many possible reasons. Oil plunge What's Tesla chief Elon Musk have up his sleeve now? Better get on Twitter to find out.Tesla, Twitter among premarket's biggest movers ... Read full post

Oct 1, 2014

Biotechs riding high as Ebola diagnosed in the U.S.

By Jeff Benjamin

Biotechs linked to Ebola treatments are taking off. The CDC has confirmed the first case of Ebola has been diagnosed in the U.S. TKMR, BCRX, NLNK, SRPT The stock market's 'Halloween indicator' looks great, but it also overlooks the scariest month of all, October. Trick or retreat J.P. Morgan Chase is getting sued by investors over mortgage-backed securities. The investment that keeps in giving. 10 months after the big bank's last $13 billion MBS settlement Is Ford the stock market's canary in the coal mine? Investors, take note. Profits are shrinking Investing like the rich and famous, even if you're neither. Start with a focus on fees and expenses ... Read full post

Sep 30, 2014

The dangerous downside of the stronger dollar

By Jeff Benjamin

A stronger U.S. dollar is threatening to knock the markets out of balance. This is scarier and more serious than the 'taper tantrum.' The downside of strength A commodity ETF that strikes all the right notes, and navigates the punishing tax gauntlet. Attracting assets as the broader category sees outflows. First Trust Global Tactical Commodity (FTGC) Sponsors are now kicking Pimco's Total Return Fund out of retirement plan menus. $88.3 billion in 401(k) plan assets Doing the math on high-interest credit card debt. Better ways to pay it off or avoid it. Tricks of the trade ... Read full post

Sep 29, 2014

Pimco fortifies to take on the old boss

By Jeff Benjamin

Gross and Ivascyn square off in an unconstrained bond fund battle. The Pimco saga gets more interesting by the day. Taking on the old boss Pimco's parent stock price drop equates to $400 billion in fund outflows, according to Morgan Stanley. Janus will only capture about $30 billion of the Pimco outflows. The investor exodus Equity markets stay on edge as civil unrest continues in Hong Kong. Waiting and watching Consider yourself warned on fixed indexed annuities. Look before you leap The short list of attractive upcoming ex-dividend dates. There is nothing stopping you from getting in ahead of the payday. APD, BGS, KIM, RTN Running the numbers of Roth IRAs for 50-somethings. Betting against future tax rates ... Read full post

Sep 26, 2014

Market ramps up for typical October wild ride

By Jeff Benjamin

Buckle in for a bumpy October, because signs point to a wild ride ahead. Volatility is back The Ray Rice video for Wall Street has arrived, says Michael Lewis. The secret Goldman Sachs tapes Warren Buffett is hating gold for all the wrong reasons. It's not just an object dug out of the ground The Alibaba bloom is already off the rose for some. Alibaba bears emerge to short 8.9 million shares ... Read full post

Sep 25, 2014

Don't overlook the housing recovery

Don't underestimate the housing recovery. Fund managers are loading up on select stocks. AWI, KBH, STWD Untangling Pimco's bond valuation mess. Sorry, folks, optimism is not an SEC-approved metric for pricing securities. It is boringly illegal Academics take a stab at fencing in high-frequency trading techniques. Expect it to work well in theory. Distinguishing market makers from traders The lousy economics of Obama's climate-change efforts. Chasing populous appeal with yet another 'defining issue of our time.' Getting real about this stuff Men, on average, are better retirement savers. Please don't shoot the messenger. It's not all about the income gap, but that's part of it ... Read full post

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