Well, it looks like the Fed finally got a clue last week and slashed short-term interest rates. They must have bought a "u" or an "e." Their 75-basis-point fed funds rate cut now has them less behind the curve. After this week's 25- or 50-basis-point cut, they will be close to, or at, my expected 3% level. It's about time.Now many are criticizing this Fed move as irresponsible or pandering to shareholders. They note the sloppy but hardly collapsing economic data and claim "bailout." Poppycock. The Fed has been behind the curve since the financial crisis began. All they are doing is following the fixed-income market lower. The more appropriate criticism of the Fed should be their tardiness.
I am buying shares in companies that have exposure to the global growth trade. I believe we will avoid economic Armageddon. The best time to purchase shares is when fear and uncertainty provide exceptional value. Many economically sensitive sectors are right there now. If the global economy collapses, I will have to change my position, but at this moment, I don't see the implosion. Since I am very active, I cannot put out individual names at this time. Blame the lawyers for trading restrictions that mentioning companies brings. However, I do like individual stocks in cheap cyclical sectors like energy, raw materials, machinery, computer components, hard drives, airlines, specialty and "tween" retail, shoes and toys. Check the archives for stock mentions in the past. I am underexposed to many traditional defensive sectors of the market, such as staples, health care, utilities and REITs. If the economy holds, their trade has passed. Maybe surprisingly, I am avoiding financials, housing, autos and other large-ticket durables. While a good trading bounce may exist here, the fundamental headwinds are simply too strong for the intermediate term. Remember, the healing process in the real estate/financial industry will take longer than many believe. When the market bounces back, shareholders will pay for growth, even if it is cyclical. Buying companies with strong top- and bottom-line growth should provide decent returns when the financial market panic subsides. The Fed's rate cuts, as well as stabilizing economic data, should support the real economy and financial asset prices. Investors are throwing out some very attractive babies with this panic bathwater. I am buying babies, especially compellingly cheap, economically sensitive ones.