I find this beyond believable. With the BILLIONS of dollars in pension money, they could hire anyone they wanted to assist them in making correct choices as to where and what to invest pensioners' money.
But instead,whoever they have hired is doing an abysmally bad job of advising/controlling pension money. Now they are talking about moving money out of stocks. Now after markets have lost billions of dollars now they want to talk about moving money out of the stock markets? Now they want to talk about hedging for a down market?
Free is better
Why am I saying this? Because information available for FREE had warned what was coming. And I'm not talking about perma-bears. I'm talking about financial advisers that are normally very optimistic.
First, let's look at a graph of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The market top was about May 19, 2015. the brown arrows highlight the areas where the decline massively accelerated: August 18th through August 26th:
Case 1: Lance Roberts
Lance Roberts of Streettalklive.com was one of who saw what was happening. Lance handles a small amount of my money (which means he handles a small amount of the small amount of money I have put aside for retirement). He puts out a weekly newsletter. It is very interesting to see into his mind and analysis from the high and until he said to pretty much sell everything. Very methodical, emotionless and....spot on.
Let's see how things progressed in his newsletters starting with the week that includes May 19:
"From the broader macro-technical perspective, the current bullish trend remains very much intact despite deterioration in market liquidity, equity outflows and weak fundamentals."
"Yes, the markets hit new highs this year - but it has been a volatile struggle to get there. While the markets have ground their way higher, the back and forth price action has sent a variety of internal momentum and breadth indicators into retreat suggesting a much less 'healthy' market than headline numbers would suggest. (It is not coincidental that the same holds true for the broader macroeconomic environment.)"
"As I discussed earlier this week, EVERY single long-term market indicator has now broken down and send signals that have ONLY occurred at prior major market peaks. ... The market has been sending repeated warnings as of late which suggests that investors remain on HIGH ALERT. With portfolio's fully allocated currently, the risk to principal of a sharp downward contraction is elevated.June 13:
If the market does begin a breakdown I will issue a full alert with instructions on how to react. However, in the meantime, it remains advisable to continue rebalancing portfolios. I have reiterated those instructions in the 401k Plan Manager again this week. "
"With the longer-term bullish trend still intact, there is little reason to become overly defensive in the allocation model currently.June 20:
However, all of the indicators are suggesting that investors should be AWARE of the mounting risks. Therefore, investors SHOULD rebalance portfolios as instructed in the 401k Plan Manager over the last several weeks which will slightly increase cash holdings.
These 'warning' signals suggest the risk of a market correction is on the rise. However, all price trends remain within the confines of a bullish advance. Therefore, portfolios should remain tilted toward equity exposure 'currently.' "
"The bottom line is that the current technical deterioration of the market should not be ignored. There are a few pockets of strength supporting the markets in some of the most speculative areas like biotechnology. I am warning you now; this will end very badly. I can't tell you WHEN, but I can tell you it WILL."June 27:
"We are very close to a long-term macro sell signal and with the market failing at overhead resistance this only leaves the longer-term bullish trend line as support. I have noted in the chart above the potential declines that could occur with a break of that support."July 3:
"China is likely more of a threat to the financial markets than Greece because what is happening in China, and as being witnessed by the Shanghai index, is NOT being covered by the media. As I have stated previously, what trips up the market is generally not an event that the market is well aware of, but one that catches it by surprise.July 11:
"Over the last several months every primary indicator of internal market strength has deteriorated. From relative strength to price action to momentum, the market is showing signs of exhaustion that have only previously been witnessed at more important cyclical market peaks.
"With relative strength deteriorating, momentum and moving averages all on the decline, the risk of lower market prices has risen markedly as of late.
HOWEVER, while the internals are VERY weak, the bullish trend has not been violated as of yet. This keeps portfolios weighted towards equities momentarily as liquidity flows into the market are still support asset prices. It is important to note that despite the internal deterioration currently, the markets still rest near all-time highs."
"For the last several months, the markets have defied the deterioration in the internals. Weakening internals from momentum to breadth have all suggested that markets were becoming much more dangerous in the short term.July 25:
It was from that stand point that I begin reiterating every week that investors should be taking some actions in portfolios. As per the April 24th Newsletter."
"While I was gone last week, the markets bounced sharply providing a good opportunity to rebalance portfolios as I have been suggesting.
There is increasing levels of risk and deterioration in the market currently and actions need to be taken to reduce relative portfolio risk and raise some CASH as a hedge against a potential further decline.
IF the markets resume their bullish trend we can always VERY EASILY reinvest harvested cash back into the markets. It is a MUCH HARDER process to make up losses when we have failed to be proactive. Remember - the one commodity we can NEVER regain is TIME.
Continue to review your current portfolio holdings and make adjustments as needed. Any slightly overweight holdings in cash from recent profit taking and rebalance instructions will simply act as a short-term hedge against market volatility."
"However, the problem is that currently there is 'no way' to tell which way it will break. A break to the upside would likely carry the markets toward 2250-2300. A break to the downside would most likely push prices towards the October 2014 lows of 1840-1850."August 9:
"Continue to review your current portfolio holdings and make adjustments as needed. Any slightly overweight holdings in cash from recent profit taking and rebalance instructions will simply act as a short-term hedge against market volatility. "August 23:
"The time has now come to start moving more heavily to cash. As I will discuss throughout this weekend's missive, including the 401k-Plan Manager, it is now time to 'OPPORTUNISTICALLY' REDUCE PORTFOLIO ALLOCATIONS."So, you can see, Lance Roberts has along the way and well before the crash has told investors and clients to start selectively sell losers and on rallies, to sell into strength. His August 23rd newsletter is sort of after the fact and isn't a whole lot of help by then, he did cover this on his radio program and recommended people sell have less than 24% of their portfolio in equities. But, by then you would have already sold a lot of your losers, going into the market sell off in a position of strength.
And remember, all this information is FREE.
New let's look at Ken Moraif of Moneymatters.net. Again, he has a free newsletter and also has a radio program. He issues "flash alerts" or emails when he is interviewed.
Case 2: Ken Moraif
Ken Moraif Aug 9:
Many of you have been emailing me with your concerns that the bull market may be coming to an end. There is no doubt that this bull market will come to an end one day. I do not believe that the time is now. Therefore, it is not yet a time to sell.Ken Moraif Aug 20:
That said, this does not mean it is not a time to be concerned. It is a time to begin the preparation for the inevitable. If your financial plan does not include a sell strategy, I believe that you are certainly at risk of losses like you may have seen back in 2000 and in 2008.
With the markets down over 2% today we now face the very real possibility that this could be the beginning of the bear market and that a global recession is coming.Ken Moraif Aug 21 - the next day:
There was no major reason why the market tumbled the way it did. It is the cumulative effect of little things that are making people start to realize what I have been warning you about for several months now and that is that the world has a massive debt problem and there is not the economic growth to provide the revenue to service it.
Well, I actually didn't think it was possible to reach our sell trigger today but we did.There you have it. Advice for FREE.
Therefore, it is now time to sell.
The radio show was recorded Friday morning and therefore I said that we had not reached our sell trigger yet. This is the advantage that you have by getting this email rather than someone who just wants to listen to the radio show to know what to do. Listeners of the radio show will not find out until a week later that we have sold.
Our strategy is not perfect and those of you that have been following me for a long time know that our strategy predicts bear markets but it also predicts bear markets that don’t happen. It is certainly possible that the market will bounce back from here and that this is not the beginning of a bear market. However, now that we have hit our trigger point the odds are very high that this is the bear market that we have been expecting. It seems that it came sooner than I thought.
I'm sorry but I can't help but question the competency of the people running the CA pensions.