July 2011 Investment Strategy

After gaining 33% from July 2, 2010 to April 29, 2011, the S&P 500 experienced its first correction, declining 7.2% from April 29 to June 16.  In comparison, the European Index dropped 13% and the emerging market index declined 9%.  As we have previously mentioned, it is natural for markets to consolidate after such a sharp and sustained gain before continuing onward.  During this modest correction, some of the leading cyclically sensitive sectors like energy, technology, and materials have pulled back the most from their market leading gains, while defensive sectors have exhibited strength.  As always, there are plenty of negative headline issues and worry lists.  Despite these concerns, we believe the fundamentals are still very positive, especially for large, high-quality, dividend paying stocks.

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