Welcome to the dog days of summer
Published on August 8, 2017
It’s official. The dog days of summer have set in. The sun is shining. The temperatures are balmy. And the markets are quiet. Is this the calm before the September storm? Possibly. But now is as good a time as any to kick back in a comfortable chair with a cool beverage in your hand and take a breath.

For more than a year there’s been turmoil in the markets, a reflection of the political upheaval many countries around the world have been dealing with. From the Brexit vote, to Trump and the US elections, to Marine Le Pen and her near ascent to the leadership of France, to British Prime Minister Theresa May losing her majority mandate for a hard exit from the European Union, there’s been no end of drama creating uncertainty. Closer to home, housing markets, particularly in and around the GTA, were sowing concern that the bubble was about to burst.

Yet, after the initial shock of these events has worn off, we seem to have adjusted and moved on. The initial emotions we felt about the UK leaving the European Union, or Trump becoming the US president, have subsided for the most part, even, in the case of the latter, if it remains front page news.

That is not to say, however, that there is nothing going on. In the last month, the Canadian dollar has risen to just below $.80 against the US dollar and the price of oil is back up to $50 per barrel. Canada has even experienced a surprise growth spurt, with Canada’s gross domestic product (GDP) growing 3.7% in the first quarter, and expecting to grow 2.7% for the year. This makes us one of the fastest-growing countries in the industrialized world.

Store the calm for a rainy day

The strength of our economy and our standing on the world stage is something we should all be proud of. And, by what I saw at the Canadian Open recently, we are. Looming large behind the 18th hole and waving atop the pin at the hole of the 18th green was the Canadian flag.

As we enjoy the rest of the summer with its quiet and calm, it may be a good time to box up these good feelings and put them in a safe place to draw upon when the next storm hits.

It’s also a good time to store away the knowledge that as far as the markets are concerned, we’re playing the long game. The drama we see in the media from day-to-day isn’t what we should be focused on. It always passes and time marches on. We simply need to be able to ride the ebbs and flows safe in the understanding that over the long term, the market tides always rise.

So, soak up the sunshine and enjoy every ounce of summer for as long as it lasts. September, with all that it brings, will be here before we know it.


Stephen Sisokin


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