Market Outlook

Canadian and U.S. markets have continued to grind higher despite investor fears that markets will correct. This is just the latest in a string of examples of how difficult it is to time a market, especially when fears are driven by headlines and geo-political concerns. Most U.S. companies have now reported third quarter results, with a higher percentage beating expectations on both the top and bottom lines than in prior quarters. However, the market’s reaction to ‘beats’ has become more muted, while the reaction to ‘misses’ has strengthened. In today’s low growth and higher valuation world, we continue to recommend investment strategies that own fewer stocks targeted at specific companies or areas of the market, versus strategies that closely resemble the broader markets. Companies benefiting from strong secular trends or that have company-specific levers to drive value creation (i.e. things that are within management’s control as opposed to having to rely on economic growth or a continued market rally) are our focus.