If you are using equity risk premiums or even earnings yield for market timing, recognize that having a high R-squared or correlation in past returns will not easily translate into market-timing profits, for two reasons. First, the past is not always prologue, and market and economic structures can shift, undercutting a key basis for using historical data to make predictions. Second, even if the correlations and regressions hold, you may still find it hard to profit from them, since you (and your clients, if you are a portfolio manager) may be bankrupt, before your predictions play out. Statistical noise (the standard errors on your regression predictions) can create havoc in your portfolios, even if it eventually gets averaged out. Related: The Benefit of Owning Stocks Over Bonds Keeps Shrinking and The Rasputin Effect: Global Resilience To Higher Rates and Most Global Economies Remain in Disequilibrium, Requiring Policy Action
- Date Posted:
- August 4, 2023
The six major US pharmaceutical firms that provide fairly detailed data reported making $215 billion worth of sales in the US for 2022. Given America's systematically higher prices, their sales abroad were logically more modest — totaling $170 billion. Despite this discrepancy, the companies reported earning very, very little in profits — in some cases, absolutely nothing — in the US. Of their $100 billion combined profit, the companies said $90 billion was made abroad, while a paltry $10 billion came from their US operations. That comes out to a profit margin of 5% in the US and a margin of over 50% abroad.