Q3-22 – This Time Wasn’t Different: Facing the Backlash of a Pandemic

“The most infamous words in finance are: this time is different. These four simple words are uttered in almost every economic, business, and investing cycle to justify valuation or price largesse of the current “darling” of the investment world. In past cycles, it was applied to real estate (Home prices will never go down they say!), the dot-com bubble (You don’t understand, the internet is taking over the world. It doesn’t matter that Pets.com doesn’t have any revenue; it will totally grow into its $290 million IPO market capitalization. 1 ), and most recently we were told over and over again that given persistently low interest rates and despite significantly elevated stock valuations, that TINA (there is no alternative) to owning stocks. Well, home prices did go down during the Great Financial Crisis, Pets.Com filed for bankruptcy less than 9 months after it went public, and despite the protests of the TINA evangelists, price and valuation still do, in fact, matter. The United States, along with most other countries around the globe, put the global economy into a coma to fight COVID, which felt appropriate enough in the early days of the pandemic when it seemed COVID might be the second coming of The Black Death.2 However, the global monetary and fiscal response in 2020 and 2021 managed to turn prudent cautionary action into a monetary and fiscal experiment never before entertained or implemented (even on a small scale).” Click here to finish reading the Q3-22 Market Commentary.

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