October 9, 2017

The major stock market averages continued their record-setting march higher in the third quarter of 2017…

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July 26, 2017

Another record high indeed! And we, Fellow Investor, are glad to hear the news as we are fully invested in common stocks…

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April 28, 2017

The bull market in stocks continued on its merry way the first three months of 2017, with the major averages reaching all-time highs…

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January 19, 2017

2016 – what a year! The stock market kicked off with one of the worst Januaries in history, a gut-wrenching plunge reminiscent of the dark days of 2008. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index finally put in a bottom in early February…

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October 24, 2016

The third quarter of 2016 was about as placid a quarter in the financial markets as I can recall. This outcome was entirely predictable as I had been warning you for a considerable time that markets are much thinner now…

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July 21, 2016

The first half of 2016 in the U.S. equity market repeated what by now has become a familiar pattern: a bout of high volatility and harrowing decline followed by recovery, netting out in the end to not much change at all……

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April 19, 2016

This letter marks at least the third time I have written to you in the past year to report that the period under review – a prior quarter, a prior year – was characterized by extraordinary volatility in the stock market, only to end, with respect to the broad averages, right about where it began…

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January 21, 2016

Statistically, 2015 looks like a fairly uneventful year. The S&P 500 was down a little bit (-0.73%) or up a little bit (+1.38%) if reinvested dividends are taken into account. But these numbers mask a less sanguine reality. Fully 95% of the S&P 500’s 2015 results were attributable to the ten largest companies in the index…

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June 30, 2015

Last April I wrote to you remarking that though there had been much to and fro, much sturm und drang, in the equity markets in the first part of 2015, very little had changed – the S&P 500 was within a hairbreadth of where it began the year. The same is true…

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April 21, 2015

Mountains labor mightily and bring forth a ridiculous mouse! The Latin poet Horace’s rendition (in English translation) of an ancient Greek proverb sums up my take on the performance of the stock market in the first quarter of 2015. Volatility increased strikingly…

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October 13, 2014

For everything there is a season and a time for every matter under heaven…. This line from Ecclesiastes, written in ancient Israel perhaps 2300 years ago by that most prolific of poets, Anonymous, set to music by Pete Seeger in the 1950s and rendered into a top-40 hit by The Byrds in 1966 comes to mind…

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July 29, 2014

Things are getting a little frothy out there! Perusal of the Wall Street Journal article reveals that Cynk Technology is a classic pump-and-dump stock promoted by characters straight out of the recent Martin Scorsese film…

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January 30, 2014

2013 was a banner year for the stock market with the S&P 500 putting up its biggest return (32.39%) since the heady days of the second Clinton Administration (1997, to be precise) when the market was roaring and the term “tech bubble” had not yet entered the general vocabulary. One commentator explained the move by saying…

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October 30, 2013

Ben Graham (1894-1976), the father of modern security analysis, the father of value investing and mentor to a host of star investors, uttered these words in 1955 before a Senate panel interested in determining whether the bull market in stocks under way at the time might in some way threaten the economic expansion…

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July 23, 2013

In prior epistles I remarked that, absent some exogenous shock, it feels as if the stock market “wants” to go up; and that, furthermore, because stock prices ultimately are tied to the fortunes of the underlying businesses, and because the direction of business has generally been up since the end of the Middle Ages…

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April 17, 2013

The most important news from the financial markets in the first quarter of 2013 was, of course, the attainment of new record highs by all of the major stock market indices in the United States. I am pleased to report that the portfolios for which we are responsible fully participated in the first quarter move; most did measurably better than the averages…

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January 16, 2013

After a basically flat year in 2011, 2012 was quite good for the stock market, with the S&P 500 Index returning 16%, despite widespread doom and gloom in the media. The equity accounts for which we are responsible trailed the S&P 500—our results were in the high-single to low-double digit range…

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October 26, 2012

If we were to take the Oracle of Omaha’s advice to heart, we would all be feeling extraordinarily greedy right now. Despite the fact that at the end of the third quarter of this year the S&P 500 closed within less than ten per cent of the all-time high set in October of 2007, and having more than doubled off the bottom set in March 2009…

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July 13, 2012

As in 2010 and 2011 the markets turned in strong first quarters, only to be confronted and confounded by the seemingly intractable problems that characterize the era in which we live, the era of global deleveraging. (“Deleveraging” is economist-speak for the process of working off accumulated debt.) The first quarter of this year was the strongest first quarter since …

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April 23, 2012

An old Wall Street adage goes something like, the market will do whatever it needs to do to thwart the maximum number of investors. That was certainly the case in the first quarter of 2012. After the stürm und drang, after the intense volatility of 2008-2011, and all the worry around the sovereign debt crises in Europe, the S&P 500 turned in its best first quarter since 1997…

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January 12, 2012

James Surowiecki, in his review of last year’s stock market in the January 16, 2012 issue of The New Yorker, neglects to mention that the U.S. market, with all its treachery, was the BEST performing major market in the world in 2011; the MSCI World Index was down more than 8% last year, while all the big European indexes posted declines of more than 20%…

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October 13, 2011

In my last two letters I commented on the heavy macro problems confronting the markets—earthquake, tsunami, nuclear meltdown in Japan, a chronically sluggish U.S. economy characterized by seemingly intractable high unemployment, and a financial crisis in Europe that appears all but insoluble—and observed that nevertheless the markets were holding their own…

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July 14, 2011

The (justifiably) famous opening words of A Tale of Two Cities pretty well sums up the way I’ve been thinking about the investment environment lately.

Under the rubric “best of times,” falls the condition of publicly-traded U.S. companies in general, and the ones owned by Weybosset Research & Management clients in particular. Business is good…

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April 19, 2011

An article in The Wall Street Journal a week or two ago proclaimed that the first quarter of 2011 was “the best first quarter for the stock market since 1997.” This in spite of the fact that the markets were confronted with: 1) a triple disaster in Japan: earthquake, tsunami, nuclear meltdown; 2) revolution, civil war…

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January 27, 2011

As I mentioned in my last letter to you, the word that comes to mind when we think about what worked for us last year is, INCOME. The financial disaster of late 2008 and early 2009 wreaked havoc on nearly every asset class, including fixed income securities (non-U.S. Treasury bonds and virtually all preferred stocks), or securities that…

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October 7, 2010

In my last letter to you, dated April 23, I noted that, as of that date, the stock market had continued its impressive rebound from the profoundly depressed levels reached in early 2009 (“albeit at a more stately pace”), and that, given reasonable valuations and decent fundamentals, the trend was likely to continue…

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April 23, 2010

I’d like to touch base with you on how we at Weybosset Research & Management LLC view the current investment situation, where we see opportunities and where we see dangers. As usual, this quarterly letter is summary in nature, designed to give a broad overview of our outlook. If you want more in the way of specifics, or would like to discuss…

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