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 A Market Valuation That Defies Comparison

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PostSubject: A Market Valuation That Defies Comparison   Wed Jan 31, 2018 4:36 pm

Comparing current equity valuations to prior valuation peaks such as those of 2008, 1999 or any other period is commonplace, but remains an essential way of assessing current market prospects and potential risks. Currently, seven of the eight traditional valuation techniques shown by Goldman Sachs below are in the upper strata of recent history.



In Second to None, published March 1, 2017, we opined that simply assessing valuation techniques, as shown above, is a great starting place for investors to gauge the present status of valuations. We added that it is equally important to normalize different periods of time to make their valuations comparable based on the level of economic growth which directly supports corporate profits. The result of our analysis shows that the current level of Cyclically Adjusted Price to Earnings (CAPE) is well above the levels of every other market peak, including 1999 and 1929. Essentially, investors are willing to pay more for each unit of economic growth today than at any time in modern history.

In this article, we update the data to reflect the current GDP adjusted CAPE and take it a step further to include the cyclical nature of corporate profit margins. When both adjustments are factored in, we gain a unique perspective that demonstrates the extent to which today’s valuations are, quite literally, off the charts.

GDP Trends

While the economy cycles from recession to growth and back, the long term economic growth trend, or secular GDP, has trended lower for the better part of the last 30 years. The graphs below show the cyclical short-term nature of economic growth (left) as well as the longer term trend (right).

https://realinvestmentadvice.com/a-market-valuation-that-defies-comparison/
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