Martin Lefebvre, CIO and Strategist
"Investors should remember that excitement and expenses are their enemies. And if they insist on trying to time their participation in equities, they should try to be fearful when others are greedy and greedy only when others are fearful."
- Warren Buffett
One word to describe markets overall in 2016 would be "resilient". Worries about China’s growth, the sharp deterioration in the energy sector’s corporate credit, and contagion risks to other asset classes such as emerging markets were the focus at the start of 2016. To keep markets on its toes, the UK people unexpectedly decided in June to leave the European Union, the Americans elected in November one the most controversial candidate in its history, and the yuan closed the year 6.5% weaker. In such an environment, how could anyone have expected an eight consecutive year of positive performance for the S&P 500 (chart 1)?
The reasons for such resilience are mutliple:
** I have prepared this commentary to give you my thoughts on various investment alternatives and considerations which may be relevant to your portfolio. This commentary reflects my opinions alone, and may not reflect the views of National Bank Financial Group. In expressing these opinions, I bring my best judgment and professional experience from the perspective of someone who surveys a broad range of investments. Therefore, this report should be viewed as a reflection of my informed opinions rather than analyses produced by the Research Department of National Bank Financial **