2018 Brings a Year of Opportunity for Investors

hand push the euro coin in to 2018Last year was a strong year for the stock market, with the S&P 500 advancing 18% and the TSX up five percent. Cryptocurrency captured headlines in 2017, with bitcoin soaring 1293%; closing out the year at US$13,889 (CDN$17,371). U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) was strong in 2017, but the Canadian economy is showing signs of slowing down. And precious metals like silver and gold were on a rollercoaster in 2017.

What’s in store for investors in 2018? Will the same kinds of stocks, currencies, precious metals, and commodities do well this year? No matter where investors look though, 2018 will bring a year of incredible opportunities. The key is knowing where to look and how to read the data.

What to Watch in 2018?

U.S. Household Debt

Thanks to consumer spending, U.S. GDP growth is expected to remain near 2.5% in 2018. There’s a downside to the strong U.S. expansion though, U.S. household debt has surpassed pre-recession levels and is in record territory. American debt is at record levels, but wage growth continues to stagnate.

The percentage of Americans who are 30 days past-due on their credit card payments continues to rise. In the third quarter of 2017 (the most recent quarter for which we have data) credit card delinquencies were up 26% from the first quarter of 2016. Over the same period of time, credit card users that are more than 60 days late on payments increased by 14%.

On top of that, the Federal Reserve raised its key interest rate three times in 2017 and many expect the Fed to raise it three more times in 2018. This will make carrying debt even more expensive.

The Stock Market

Again, the S&P 500 had a strong year, finishing up 18% year-over-year. Many economists expect the index to end 2018 at around 2,840; or up about 5.5% from where it started 2018. Not as strong as 2017, but it could still end the year in record territory.

This too sounds encouraging, but keep in mind, the current bull market is in its eighth year and is the second longest in history. On an inflation-adjusted basis, the S&P 500 is up around 200% since bottoming in March 2009.

Since the U.S. recession, stock valuations have been fuelled (up until very recently) by artificially low interest rates and financial engineering (share buybacks and cost cutting) not strong earnings and revenue growth.

The most popular measure of stock market valuations, the Case Shiller PE Ratio, suggests stocks are overvalued by 105%. The ratio is at 32.65, the long-term average is 16.

Stocks have only been more overvalued once, in December 1999, during the dotcom era the index hit a peak of 44.20. Stocks are even more overvalued now than in 1929. In September 1929, just before Black Tuesday, the index was at 32.56.

It never ends well when stocks are this overvalued. In fact, in both previous cases, it was followed by a stock market crash.

Cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ripple, Etherum, and Litecoin will continue to dominate the headlines in 2018. Bitcoin is up almost 1,300% since the start of 2017 while other less known cryptocurrencies are also on a tear.

Etherum, a rival of Bitcoin, hit a record high of $900 on January 2, 2018; at the start of 2017, it was worth $8.00. At the start of 2017, Ripple was worth $0.006; in the first week of January 2018, it was at $2.45.

While cryptocurrencies will continue to be volatile, it’s a safe bet to say that a number of alt-coins will more than double in price in 2018. For investors, there’s simply too much upside in cryptocurrencies; this will also have the added benefit of sending investors to lower priced alt-coins hoping for the same kind of Bitcoin returns.

But again, not all cryptocurrencies are created equal.

Learn-To-Trade.com, Canada’s Leader in Stock Market Trading Courses

There are a lot of different ways to make money when it comes to the markets. While stocks are the most popular method, investors can also profit from trading commodities and currencies. To do so though, investors need to understand what makes stocks, precious metals, currencies, etc. rise and fall. Learn-To-Trade.com can help investors read these signs and profit no matter which direction the markets are heading.

Learn-To-Trade.com is home to Canada’s oldest and leading stock market trading courses, and can help investors of every skill level to trade more confidently and profit consistently.

At Learn-To-Trade.com, our expert traders will show you how to read charts and teach you about technical, fundamentals, risk management, and capital preservation. You will also learn about commodities, futures, stock options, foreign markets, stock index trading, Forex trading, and cryptocurrencies.

At Learn-To-Trade.com we understand that no two investors are alike. That’s why we have a unique, Lifetime Membership that allows you to re-attend any part of the program as often as you’d like.

To learn more about Learn-To-Trade.com’s stock market trading course, contact us at 416-510-5560 or by e-mail at info@learn-to-trade.com.

Photo Credit: iStock.com/Pixfly

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George Karpouzis is the co-founder of Learn-to-Trade and has been personally providing education and mentoring to over 3000 members since 1999. George has been trading in the stocks, options, futures and forex markets using technical analysis since 1986. With the help of advancements in trading technology the Learn To Trade program is now accessible worldwide. His background and passion for teaching brings an invaluable asset to our members. George is constantly striving to improve the program content and develop new strategic relationships for the benefit of the members. Add me to your G+

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Learn To Trade
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Susan C

Don’t hesitate jump into it right now. You will be glad you did!

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The ongoing support has been the reason for my success

Patrick L

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The ongoing support has been the reason for my success

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I wanted to let you know that I had taken your course in the fall of 2013. I took your advice and used demo accounts for the last quarter of 2013. I switched to real money trading account in the Near Year, when I finally felt comfortable. Following the lessons taught to me by you (don’t jump on a moving train, peaks and valleys, EMA..etc), I wanted to let you know that I have been successful beyond my own expectations. Thank you very much – taking the Learn-to-Trade course was, by far, the best decision I made in my business career.

Steven R

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2014-08-20T02:56:18-04:00

Steven R

I wanted to let you know that I had taken your course in the fall of 2013. I took your advice and used demo accounts for the last quarter of 2013. I switched to real money trading account in the Near Year, when I finally felt comfortable. Following the lessons taught to me by you (don’t jump on a moving train, peaks and valleys, EMA..etc), I wanted to let you know that I have been successful beyond my own expectations. Thank you very much – taking the Learn-to-Trade course was, by far, the best decision I made in my business career.

Joseph L

The past options and forex tutorials taught by George were very helpful. I find these tutorials invaluable for a busy person like myself. I was able to keep myself up to date and on track ready to continue the learning process. Thanks for all the help and keep up the great work.

Joseph L

Learn To Trade
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2014-08-20T10:36:37-04:00

Joseph L

The past options and forex tutorials taught by George were very helpful. I find these tutorials invaluable for a busy person like myself. I was able to keep myself up to date and on track ready to continue the learning process. Thanks for all the help and keep up the great work.

Harley S

The course is amazing. Where were you 30 years ago?

Harley S

Learn To Trade
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2014-08-20T10:37:39-04:00

Harley S

The course is amazing. Where were you 30 years ago?

Partick M

I learned the basics I needed to trade successfully.

Partick M

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Partick M

I learned the basics I needed to trade successfully.

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Iouri G

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Uldus V

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Uldus V

I was impressed with the course’s professionalism and enthusiasm.

Dean K

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Dean K

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2014-08-20T10:42:24-04:00

Dean K

I wish I knew about trading as a business years ago!

Peter P

Learn to Trade provided me with strategy, self-confidence and discipline

Peter P

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2014-08-20T10:42:57-04:00

Peter P

Learn to Trade provided me with strategy, self-confidence and discipline

Shelley P

I took your course in 2008 and loved it. Since then I have been using what I learned at Learn-to-Trade to nicely supplement my pension income. Wanting a carefree type of trading, I have for the most part just sold options and made a monthly income which is a nice addition to my pension. I know I never would have made this kind of trading income without Learn-to-Trade. Thank you!

Shelley P

Learn To Trade
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2014-08-20T10:34:39-04:00

Shelley P

I took your course in 2008 and loved it. Since then I have been using what I learned at Learn-to-Trade to nicely supplement my pension income. Wanting a carefree type of trading, I have for the most part just sold options and made a monthly income which is a nice addition to my pension. I know I never would have made this kind of trading income without Learn-to-Trade. Thank you!

Amir

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I just wanted to thank you again for the amazing work on the tutorials especially Options trading.   Prior to joining, I had underestimated the quality of the trainings but they certainly far exceeded my expectations. Only I wish I’d found you 5-10 years ago!
Learn To Trade
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Hi George, I just wanted to thank you again for the amazing work on the tutorials especially Options trading.   Prior to joining, I had underestimated the quality of the trainings but they certainly far exceeded my expectations. Only I wish I’d found you 5-10 years ago!
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