Early this year, pundits were talking about how the equity bull market would continue, but that thought has seemed to vanish. Europe and Japan continue to stimulate their economies in the form of quantitative easing, but in a surprise move this morning, news broke that China was deliberately devaluing its currency. This news has taken the markets lower, as the idea that the world economic slowdown has taken hold.
The US GDP numbers for the first half already showed signs of a slowdown and the US had been the nicest house in a bad neighborhood. During the last month or so, the markets have pulled back; with some indexes negative on the year (especially in Emerging Markets which are more commodity oriented). At the moment, Granite Group believes the Fed is set to raise rates. This will surely make our currency even stronger, and the stage is set for a global slowdown. Time will tell, but one thing is for sure, a strong dollar will continue to hurt our economy.