April 2013 Investment Strategy

In spite of a lack of participation by large segments of investors, the S&P 500 Index made a new all-time high during the first quarter. Thus far in 2013, the S&P 500 has gained 10%. Much more impressive is the 132% gain in the Index since the market bottom in March 2009. Despite these gains, there is no shortage of market forecasters predicting an imminent crash for a variety of reasons. We are encouraged by this skepticism because it provides the “wall of worry” that all long-lived bull markets climb. These fears and negative forecasts restrain overly rosy expectations, contain speculative excesses, and prevent the market from becoming greatly overvalued. Although overdue for a short-term correction of 4-7%, we still believe the markets have considerable room to appreciate for several reasons, including attractive stock valuations, a strengthening economy, and the likely flow of new investor money into equities.

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