EC It’s Been A Good Year So Far

 

Rounding out our review of 2019’s market results so far: let’s note that there’s an upside bias in foreign government bonds. SPDR Bloomberg Barclays International Treasury Bond (BWX) is up 0.9% while VanEck Vectors JP Morgan Emerging Market Local Bond (EMLC) has added 2.7% since last year’s close.

It’s tempting to see the generally upbeat results as a sign that all’s well. But a quick scan of the headlines reminds that there’s no shortage of risk factors threatening to create trouble for the rest of the year. From the partial US government shutdown to concerns that global growth is slowing to Mideast tensions and Brexit coming to a head, the markets have a deep well of raw material to draw on for climbing a wall of worry in the weeks and months ahead.

So far, however, the crowd is willing to revive animal spirits after a disappointing 2018. Nothing wrong with that. But given that it’s only Jan. 11, it’s premature to read too much into the year-to-date numbers. Meanwhile, one day at a time. It’s been a good year so far!

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