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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Canadian CPI massively underestimates housing costs

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 22, 2021

Canada’s statistics bureau, StatsCan, says that CPI-measured inflation is running hot. Year-over-year gains were 4.4 percent for September 2021, one of the fastest rates among developed countries. News reports highlighted rising food and gasoline prices... Read more
Rapidly building inflation threatens

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 15, 2021

Inflation is threatening to get out of control and central banks could be asleep at the switch. In the U.S. the Fed remains supremely confident of its ability to control rising prices, if needed. Is the Fed overconfident? US inflation CPI hit a 13-year... Read more
Tesla results are electrifying

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 08, 2021

Tesla released outstanding sales for the third quarter ending September 30, 2021. At 240,000 vehicles over three months, Tesla deliveries will soon reach 1 million vehicles annually. The rest of the auto industry remains in a deep slump. Is Tesla’s rapid... Read more
Twin growth challenges in China will test the world

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Oct 01, 2021

China is being hit by the double whammy of a real estate slowdown and electrical power shortages. The Chinese system will be put to a severe test. Will China’s twin challenges impact the world economy? Since China was initiated into the WTO in 2001 the... Read more
China Evergrande is not Lehman Brothers

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 24, 2021

The China Evergrande debacle continues to worsen. China Evergrande, the second largest property developer in China and the most indebted in the world, missed loan payments this week, triggering a technical default. Is the China Evergrande crisis like... Read more
Nuclear power cannot replace fossil fuels

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 17, 2021

Nuclear power is an important source of low-emissions electricity that many expect to play a key role in meeting the challenge of reducing carbon emissions to zero by 2050. As coal-fired electricity generation is phased out, electricity demand will be... Read more
Irrational exuberance is here again

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 10, 2021

Irrational exuberance is a term introduced by Alan Greenspan in a speech in December 1996. In 2021, the degree of enthusiasm for financial assets is at an extreme seldom seen before throughout history. Will this episode of irrational exuberance lead to... Read more
Corporate debt threatens the recovery

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Sep 03, 2021

Corporate indebtedness has been increasing at a steady rate for years. The rate of increase has even accelerated since 2008. This amount of debt in the corporate world makes the economy more vulnerable to new shocks. Will elevated corporate debt trigger... Read more
Stock market speculation soars

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Aug 27, 2021

Speculation in stock markets has been growing for many months. But the latest review of several reliable indicators of speculation shows that a shocking amount of speculative fever has appeared in stock market activity. Does this degree of speculation... Read more
Property developer China Evergrande could trigger a crisis

Published by Hilliard MacBeth on Aug 20, 2021

China Evergrande Group, one of the largest property developers in the world, appears to be unable to pay its debts. Investors reacted badly when founder and Chairman, Hui Ka Yan, stepped down from his role as chair of the most important unit of the company... Read more