Letter on COVID-19

As we briefly highlighted a few weeks ago, as the equity markets began to sell-off, we continue to monitor the economic turmoil and remain confident that global markets will recover from the economic uncertainty that we are facing with COVID-19 (Coronavirus). As we have told clients in the past, volatility and economic/political uncertainty is very normal in financial markets and it’s important to not overreact and panic. It is very normal for investors to feel like this time is different as we go through a correction. While the circumstances driving each are always different, one thing we know is that we eventually emerge, and over time, the markets continue to move higher.

Of course, we are closely following all the headlines and like everyone else don’t know how long this will persist; but what we do know is that the underlying US economy appears strong and the financial system is well-capitalized. We are still in the early stages of truly understanding the full economic, financial and social impact to our economy and globally. There is no doubt at this point that global GDP will slow, but we remind clients that the market is forward looking and already pricing this in to some extent. That said, the possibility of more downside is very real, and the bottoming process may take a while.

We are closely monitoring client portfolios and will adjust as new information becomes available, but we are not in the business of timing markets and calling tops/bottoms. Each of our clients are allocated based upon the plan that we set in place for them and we do not believe it’s a time to deviate from that by either dialing up risk or by bringing it down significantly. With the range of outcomes being so vast, we feel it best to stay the course. It’s not time to sell but it’s also not a time to ditch your bonds and cash for stocks.

We are hard at work trying to identify how we can use this downturn to our advantage: tax loss harvesting, buying great companies at steep discounts, & shedding exposure to areas of the economy that we view as being unstable, such as Energy. You have heard us harp on the importance of diversification and periods like we are currently experiencing are a reminder of why it is vitally important. Our bonds and other diversifying strategies have performed quite well over the last few weeks.  

As always, we are here to answer any questions and be a resource. Please feel free to reach out at any time.

Sincerely,

Canal Capital Management

Canal Named Future 50 RIA

Canal Capital is Pleased to announce that it was named to the RIA Future 50 list published by CityWire USA. The RIA Future 50 firms represent a group of finance professionals who are collectively creating this new investment landscape. They have their own unique story to tell, are driven to succeed on their own terms and, most importantly, are in charge of their own investment decisions.

Click here to see the full list

Redemption

As we write this letter and reflect back on the past few weeks, the word that keeps coming to mind is REDEMPTION. Just like the Virginia Cavaliers basketball team in the National Championship and Tiger Woods at The Masters, the market has had the ultimate bounce back story: falling 20% the last few months of 2018 to up over 16% for the year as of the writing of this letter. Despite this bounce back, the risks initially associated with the steep decline in 2018 are still very much there, and until we have a clear signal telling us otherwise, we will remain with a more defensive posture. After all, it was the defense by Virginia and the safe play of Tiger Woods that won them championships.

Please Click Here to Read our Full Commentary

Storm Clouds

Despite what some people may say, no one really knows the exact reason as to why the market has pulled back so ferociously, but what we do know is that in any given year, the market normally has 3 drops of over 5%. This is the 2nd drop this year after zero in 2017. In other words the market generally goes up over time, but can take a step back or two at any moment. That said, markets tend to move in cycles and we must be cognizant of where we are because, as cycles get longer, pullbacks tend to become more frequent and more severe.

Please click here to read our 3rd Quarter 2018 Market Commentary

How to Handle a More Volatile Market

Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” -Mike Tyson

While we are bullish in the short term, we remain cognizant of where we are in the cycle and are preparing ourselves for what a down market may bring. Having a plan in place beforehand helps control emotions and ultimately leads to better investment decisions. In this latest newsletter, we’ve taken a look back at this past quarter, some of the things that are causing the choppiness in the market: tariff talks and rising interest rates, and how we are preparing for a more volatile market environment.

Click here to read our 2nd Quarter 2018 Market Commentary