After moving halfway through the year we’re looking more and more like the 2014 rendition we spoke of as 2018 began. 

Back in 2014, we had a relatively thin trade range until November, with a nice run to the finish line.

And as difficult as this may sound for the near-term, I would not be at all surprised to see something like this unfold again.

The markets are simply building and storing up energy.

And Speaking of Energy…

The crude oil market has once again gotten the attention of the crowd, as the chatter about hitting $100 per barrel surfaced once again. 

Folks, that’s highly unlikely to happen.

The US is now the leading oil producer, but you’re not going to see that in the headlines anytime soon.

We’ve seen crude oil facing its twilight for several years now. 

Blame it on technology and Generation Y, but the pace of that demise is picking up even as the oil price sees one more final day in the sun.

While other energy sources are chipping away at the edges of demand every day, technology is letting us find oil almost anywhere. 

And the recent price bounce has flooded the market with activity.

I was actually surprised to see that even Jeremy Grantham is coming around to this idea. His words at a recent conference may surprise some of you out there:

Oild Chart1

Taking that idea a step further and think about how we stand in line today at a gas pump for 7 or 8 minutes to fill our tank.  And we exchange that window of time for about $40 or $50 in America, all for the benefit of moving around for 300-400 miles in a car. 

Then we do it again. 

Folks, the moment we can stand at another type of pump and charge a battery for 7-8 minutes for the same 300-400 miles, it is lights out for crude oil as we once knew it. 

And as for the Middle East…?

Like I’ve said many times before, the Middle East has two things in abundance:  Sand and Oil. And we don't need sand.  So, imagine the day we don't need oil.

That day will arrive with a plethora of headline writers telling you it’s the end of the world.

It won’t be.

What About Interest Rates Killing Housing....

Gosh, really?!

Oild Chart2

Match that with the beat on housing starts last week.

OK, but Manufacturing is slowing, right?

Eh, no. It was a 9-point beat on 27.

Oild Chart3

Each summer arrives with the promise of market chop, a haze of scary headlines, and an absence of experienced hands at the control (they’ve mostly headed off to the beach).

And as we get deeper into that haze we should expect an increased volume of scary headlines and some stock market ups and downs.

Every summer seems to come and go in a similar vein.

And if we’re expecting it to happen instead of fearing its arrival we’re less likely to overreact once it arrives.

Mike Williams
Founder and Managing Partner