Quote of the Week

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” – Stephen Covey

Technical Corner – Vaccine vs Virus Scorecard

There is not much to report this week. The vaccine beat the virus last week with the markets up around 1%. We are now solidly in Quad II with both growth and inflation rising. The trend is strong enough that we should remain in Quad II for a couple more quarters. Quad II is very good for the stock market and not so good for the bond market. Of course, that could change and we will adjust accordingly.

We have been tracking a stock portfolio (evaluated and recommended by Hedgeye) since June 30, 2020. It has done well. Therefore, on November 20, we added those stocks to our overall portfolio.

This is going to be a busy week for us because we are moving our Variable Annuity and Variable Life contracts out of our conservative position back into the stock market as much as possible. It is important to understand that we will invest your assets in the areas with the highest probability of success. Most of these contracts require us to keep a portion in the bond market in order to keep the guaranteed lifetime income. We will adhere to that rule and put the rest of the investments in the stock market.

Larry’s Thoughts

CHART OF THE DAY: Vaccine doses for the global population


With the U.S. Food and Drug Administration set to review Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine this week for emergency use authorization and Moderna’s vaccine next week, we have passed the “if” phase of questions around the vaccine. Now, the focus turns to the “when and how” of distribution.

The U.S. expects to have enough vaccines for every American who wants one by the second quarter of 2021.

The United States expects to have enough COVID-19 vaccines for every American who wants one by the second quarter of 2021, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told ABC News this past weekend. This is much-needed good news as daily confirmed COVID-19 cases in the United States approach a 200,000 seven-day moving average, and deaths steadily increase. Last Thursday alone, a record 2,867 Americans lost their lives to the disease.

The U.K. has already granted emergency approval of Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine. U.S. approval of both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines is expected this month, with the likely approval of the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson vaccines to follow in early 2021. But the question of distribution to a global population is complex and highly dependent upon production, logistics and participation at the federal, state and local levels.

What is important to keep in mind when vaccine developers, the media and government officials talk about vaccine quantities is that they often refer to “doses,” not full vaccine regimens. Of the four vaccines being tested in the United States, Pfizer, Moderna and Oxford all require two doses per person for a full vaccine cycle. As such, the figures below have been adjusted to show the number of people that can be vaccinated, as opposed to the number of doses that will be available.

While there are many caveats and unknowns that are difficult to illustrate, the first chart below shows the number of full vaccine regimens – and thus, the number of people that will be able to be vaccinated –  based on countries’ executed and tentative contracts with the vaccine developers. The second chart shows vaccination capabilities based on doses already procured and also future potential doses.

We expect that there will be sufficient vaccines available for every American who wants to be vaccinated against COVID-19, and many more available to be distributed globally.

While there will be more than enough vaccines to go around domestically and in most developed nations, in order for the United States to reach a full economic recovery there must also be a global recovery. With that in mind, it is the responsibility of world leaders to support international vaccination efforts, either through their own humanitarian efforts or through international coalitions such as COVAX (included in our second chart below), which are working toward global equitable access of a vaccine.

For more information on how the coronavirus is affecting midsize businesses, please visit the RSM Coronavirus Resource Center.

Lohr, Adam. “CHART OF THE DAY: Vaccine doses for the global population.” https://realeconomy.rsmus.com/chart-of-the-day-vaccine-doses-for-the-global-population/  Accessed December 8, 2020

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These are the opinions of Larry Lof and not necessarily those of Cambridge, are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed or acted upon as individualized investment advice. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Due to our compliance review process, delayed dissemination of this commentary occurs.

The S&P 500 is an index of stocks compiled by Standard & Poor’s, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. The Index includes a representative sample of 500 leading companies in leading industries of the U.S. economy. Indices mentioned are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly.

Technical analysis represents an observation of past performance and trend, and past performance and trend are no guarantee of future performance, price, or trend. The price movements within capital markets cannot be guaranteed and always remain uncertain. The allocation discussed herein is not designed based on the individual needs of any one specific client or investor. In other words, it is not a customized strategy designed on the specific financial circumstances of the client. Please consult an advisor to discuss your individual situation before making any investments decision. Investing in securities involves risk of loss. Further, depending on the different types of investments, there may be varying degrees of risk including loss of original principal.

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