Hilliard’s Weekend Notebook

Thoughts, views and opinions as current events unfold: With topics taken from current market events and my latest book — When the Bubble Bursts: Surviving the Canadian Real Estate Crash (Dundurn: March 2015)  and my first book Investment Traps and How to Avoid Them (1999) — this short piece will give you unique and valuable insights filtered by my thirty-six years’ experience as an investment professional.


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Volatility is good for value investors

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Nov 09, 2018

World stock markets are experiencing unusual volatility during 2018, and some markets, like China, are down more than 20 percent from the start of the year. Political upheaval in the U.S. and Europe is nearly a certainty in 2019, as U.S. election results... Continue reading
What four decades in the investment world has taught me

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Nov 02, 2018

An anniversary marking 40 years for me as an investment advisor arrived on November 1 this week. When I started as a stockbroker in 1978 I remember calling people to talk about Canada Savings Bonds that earned 9.5% interest. Since then bond yields have... Continue reading
The Bank of Canada gets serious about inflation

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 26, 2018

The Bank of Canada hiked rates this week and said that there is no longer any need for monetary stimulus. The Bank of Canada rate now stands at 1.75%, the third hike this year. The so-called “neutral” rate could be 3% or even higher. It’s clear that the... Continue reading
Canadian crude oil at record discount

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 19, 2018

World oil prices are at cycle highs recently with the benchmark Brent at US$80 and the North American West Texas Intermediate (WTI) at US$70. But in Canada, the Western Canada Select (WCS) price is below US$20. This gap of US$50 to WTI is shocking. Will... Continue reading
Higher rates hit the market

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 12, 2018

Interest rates have been trending higher for more than a year, in the U.S., Canada and elsewhere. Stock markets had managed to ignore the impact of higher rates until this week. If interest rates keep going higher, will asset values in real estate and... Continue reading
Time to buy gold redux

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 05, 2018

Shares of gold mining companies have never been cheaper, by several measures. Gold miners’ share prices have been drifting lower since 2016 as the S&P 500, led by a few large technology companies, keeps hitting new highs. This year, stock market values... Continue reading
Investment ideas from the September 2018 BCA conference

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 28, 2018

BCA Research’s annual conference delivered some great investment ideas this year, over two jam-packed days, to an audience of about 300 portfolio managers and investors from all over the world. There were some surprising forecasts, in an environment of... Continue reading
No one saw it coming

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 21, 2018

Recent news articles focused on the tenth anniversary of the Lehman Brothers failure and the global financial crisis that followed. A theme runs through much of the commentary; that no one could have foreseen the 2008-09 crisis. That narrative is wrong... Continue reading
When the Bank decides

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 14, 2018

Recently I attended The Oxford Central Banking Senior Executive Programme. Five days of presentations and discussions reinforced my understanding of the process of creating money — 97 percent of money has been created by commercial banks when they make... Continue reading
The investment implications of increased longevity

Published by Jonathan MacLeod on Sep 07, 2018

Longevity is an interesting concept for investors.  In its simplest form longevity is undoubtedly seen as a good thing because it means more time spent enjoying life or time with loved ones.  With significant gains in longevity over recent decades it... Continue reading