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George Putnam, one of the country's leading turnaround and distressed investing professionals, shares his timely insight on the economy and turnaround investing opportunities.

Whither this Election Year Market?

Excerpted from the May 2012 Issue

May 24, 2012

As political posturing and rhetoric continues to escalate, most of us are wondering about the election’s potential impact on our investments.

Historically, the stock market generally does well in a presidential election year. The S&P has risen in 12 of the 15 presidential election years since 1952. However, the trend has been less clear in recent election years, with stocks showing significant losses in 2000 and 2008. While election year results have generally been good, the best returns have typically come in the year before the election year—on average more than double the annual return rates seen in each of the other three years.

Much has also been made of how each candidate—and his respective party’s philosophies—will impact Wall Street. History shows us that the market has tended to respond more favorably to a Republican victory in past elections. In short, although there is some logic to the presidential cycle, you shouldn’t be trying to time the stock market—in an election year or any other time. Read more historic election year statistics.

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George Putnam's Favorite Stocks for 2016

stock picks

Distressed Investing Blog

Distressed Investing Blog

2015 Bankruptcy Recap: 46% Increase Fueled by Oil & Gas/Mining Industry--Further Uptick Predicted

Looking back at 2015, research reveals a 14% decline in overall business bankruptcies but a 46% uptick in public company Chapter 11 filings—with a striking 51% of those filings coming from the battered Oil & Gas/Mining sectors. Economic indicators point to further increases in corporate bankruptcy, in general, and Energy-related filings, in particular. Just a few days into 2016, this viewpoint has already been validated by Arch Coal's long-awaited $8 billion Chapter 11 filing—and continuing oil price plummets severe enough that OPEC will likely convene an emergency meeting to address "shattered" economies. Read More.

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Spotlight: Junk Bond Market

stock market advice

MarketWatch's Mark Hulbert recently tapped George's distressed investing expertise to determine the fate of the junk-bond market and what its nearly three-year decline likely means for your portfolio.

 

Hulbert writes, "What’s really going on? For insight, I turned to George Putnam, an expert in distressed-company investing. His Turnaround Letter advisory service has handily beaten the stock market over the past 15 years, according to the Hulbert Financial Digest’s tracking, by an impressive margin of 7.3 percentage points a year on an annualized basis."

 

Commenting on the rapid growth of high-yield exchange traded funds (ETF's), Putnam notes, "They have become the investment vehicle of choice for short-term investors….Those investors tend to be trend followers and, therefore, are just the opposite of being contrarian."

 

Read the full MarketWatch junk-bond article to find out what George thinks these recent indicators likely mean for future distressed investing profit.