Why You Should Welcome Weak GDP Forecasts

On Amazon.com’s Money & Markets blog, Validea CEO John Reese discusses the low-growth expectations for the U.S. economy — and why he likes them.

“No, I’m not heavily short on stocks,” Reese writes. “And I’m certainly not rooting against the United States. I’m simply looking at history, and history has shown that, while many investors and pundits fret and hyperfocus on every GDP report and revision, GDP growth actually matters little in terms of long-term stock returns.”

Reese looks at the work of Elroy Dimson, Paul Marsh, Mike Staunton, and Jay Ritter, which showed that over a century-long period across a variety of markets, high GDP growth didn’t lead to better stock returns — in fact, sometimes there was a negative correlation between GDP and stock returns. He examines reasons why GDP and stock returns aren’t linked, and talks about why the current low-GDP forecasts thus bode well for the market.