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The PPP Narrative for Asset Managers

By Ben Hunt | May 28, 2020

A narrative backlash is developing against RIAs and other asset managers that took PPP money.

Fair or not, this narrative is pure red meat for anti-Wall Street sentiment, particularly in an election season and particularly as the stock market goes up even as the real economy suffers.

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Children of Men

By Ben Hunt | May 21, 2020

Can a free world survive an endemic COVID-19, where there’s no vaccine but a chronic global affliction?

I used to think yes. Now I think no.

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Everything You Always Wanted to Know About CDS … But Were Afraid to Ask

By Ben Hunt | May 12, 2020

I know it’s forbidden to say this, but I like Woody Allen movies. If you’ve never seen “Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* … But Were Afraid to Ask”, it’s worth your time just for the Gene Wilder scenes. And yes, credit default swaps are the sheep in this story.

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The Pent-Up Demand Narrative

By Ben Hunt | May 5, 2020

The dominant COVID-19 narrative today is a “short and deep” economic impact, with a corollary narrative of “pent-up demand”. These are market-positive narratives.

Here’s how we think those narratives could reverse, and here’s what investors should watch for to see if that reversal happens.

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The Bear Stearns Bounce

By Ben Hunt | April 23, 2020

In 2008, the market came roaring back after Bear Stearns was sold for parts to Jamie Dimon. Why? Because narrative. Because with Bear’s elimination, “systemic risk was off the table.”

That’s the question you need to ask yourself today. Is systemic risk off the table?

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Pandemic Playbook Notes – 4/7

By Rusty Guinn | April 7, 2020

We provide an update on our thinking about narrative structure as of April 7, 2020. In short, there is an emerging “we flattened the curve” narrative. We think it has some meaningful implications.

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But Barry Sternlicht Says …

By Ben Hunt | April 1, 2020

I honestly have no idea what the world is going to look like in six months! I’m sure I’m not alone. And if you honestly have no idea what the world is going to look like in six months, are you going to live up to your commercial obligations (like a lease) over the next six months as if the world is still spinning as always on its axis?

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Pandemic Playbook Notes – 3/23

By Rusty Guinn | March 23, 2020

We update our thinking based on the framework we published on 3/17, especially in two areas with active changes in narrative structure: fiscal and monetary policy responses.

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Pandemic Playbook – 3/17

By Rusty Guinn | March 17, 2020

After a few weeks of historic market volatility, we reexamine the framework we would use to think about the implications of Covid-19 and the mitigation response for multi-asset portfolios.

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Narrative Monitors

Legacy Monitor Archive (Pre-January 2020)