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North Korea, China and Trump: Is Anyone Really Surprised?

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North Korea, China and Trump: Is Anyone Really Surprised?

This week resident mixologists, Chris Versace, Chief Investment Office and Lenore Hawkins, Chief Macro Strategist focus on the two key issues driving the stock market as we enter the second half of 2Q 2108. With the March quarter earnings season winding down, trade and the Fed have once again taken center stage in a big way, reigniting investor worries.

As Chris and Lenore discuss, they see the bluster emanating from the White House and President Trump’s Twitter feed over new potential import tariffs on auto and canceling the June 12 meeting North Korea as the latest negotiating tactics in the Trump playbook. Pretty much it’s Trump: The Art of the Deal on the accelerating escalator and it’s bringing rising uncertainty back into the market. As we discuss on the podcast it’s likely to be a long road to overhauling trade with China and nuclear disarmament North Korea.

Related: Earnings Failed to Excite Amidst Rising Geopolitical Instability

Turning to the Fed, it’s latest FOMC meeting minutes all but guarantee a June rate hike, and the market is already anticipating another in September. While the Fed thinks the economy can handle these rate hikes, Lenore and Chris are far more concerned with the consumer that is already devoting more of his and her disposable income to servicing consumer debt than in the depths of the Great Recession. More rate hikes, higher interest costs, less disposable income, more credit card delinquencies and more people living paycheck to paycheck that can’t handle a $400 emergency expense. On the podcast they share how and why this growing pain point is a tailwind for Tematica’s Cash-strapped Consumer investing theme.

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