Early this year former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and past Chairwoman Janet Yellen spoke to a group of economists in Atlanta. At one point the following exchange occurred between them: Dr. Yellen said, “I don’t think expansions just die of old age,” to which Dr. Bernanke replied, “I like to say they get murdered.”
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Another year is in the history books and as is often the case, global equity markets behaved in a manner most investors were not expecting. U.S. large cap stocks booked their first negative year in a decade and only their second negative year since 2003. U.S. small cap equities and non‐U.S. equities underperformed U.S. large cap equities; bonds were flat to negative; and hedge funds had a difficult year again. Ned Davis Research found that 2018 was the first year since at least 1972 in which no major public asset class returned at least 5%.
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