Dennis Gartman, who’s closing down his daily newsletter, had some parting advice for investors: sell.
The famed investor, who called it quits on his namesake “The Gartman Letter” last week after 30 years, said Donald Trump’s multiple trade wars and other threats mean it’s time to raise cash.
“People should be taking a lot of profits and getting far less involved with stocks than they have over the course of the past two or three years,” he said in a phone interview.
While declining to say if equities have topped, Gartman recommended investors keep 60% or more of their assets in cash.
Trade is a big concern for Gartman, who has been a critic of the administration’s protectionist policies. He says the skirmishes harm the economy and send a terrible signal to importers and exporters.
Trump has been wielding the threat of tariffs for the better part of two years, though his administration has taken steps in recent days to come to a so-called phase-one deal with America’s biggest partner, China. But the trade wars still pose a risk, says Gartman.
“When you conjure up a trade war such as he’s conjuring up — you’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again — this is a very slippery slope, and once you go down that slope, it usually ends badly,” he said. “We’ve run a trade deficit with the world for the last five decades — is the United States a better place to live in now than it was 50 years ago? The answer is: absolutely.”
Amid this backdrop, stock prices have gotten “egregiously high,” he said.
“I’m still marginally net-long but I’m demonstrably less long than I have been and I’m thinking about getting less long today,” said Gartman. “It may only be a matter of a few days before I start saying I’m going to be net short of stocks.”
Gartman spoke to Bloomberg News just days after halting the publication of his newsletter, which he ran for more than three decades and which counted hedge funds, banks and brokerage firms among its subscribers.
He added that he won’t be giving up TV, radio and print interviews and may be looking into launching a podcast.
The decision was partly driven by competition that has ratcheted up in recent years, said Gartman, who plans to spend more time with his family, among other things. “It’s so much more difficult to keep up,” he said. “It’s just time to say, ‘I’m done.”’
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