In The Media
Christiana Trust managers are regularly featured in various media outlets. Below are the quoted excerpts from articles featuring our managers.
January 2014 (Kiplinger)
Kiplinger's 2014 Stock Market Outlook: More Gains
Growing supplies of natural gas particularly benefit chemical companies, including Dow Chemical (symbol DOW) and Westlake Chemical (WLK). Low-cost energy producers will also thrive. Scott Armiger, chief investment officer at Christiana Trust, thinks patient investors will be rewarded with shares in Ultra Petroleum (UPL).
November 20, 2013 (Reuters)
Slowing Buybacks Could Spell Trouble for US Stocks
"If they are looking at the forward price-to-earnings ratio and saying stocks are cheap because they are factoring in a certain percent of buybacks and they suddenly dry up, that is not good," said Scott Armiger, portfolio manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware.
November 14, 2013 (The Philadelphia Inquirer)
Your Money: Ready to Think About Tax Time and Changes Ahead?
"Scott Armiger, chief investment officer of Christiana Trust, a division of WSFS Bank, contends that the stock market's record-setting momentum is delaying the start of a "much-needed pullback to bring valuations more in line with economic conditions."
Based in Wilmington, Christiana Trust's Armiger says the Federal Reserve's third round of quantitative easing has served to "inflate the market and constrains it from properly adjusting to weaker employment data, flat GDP expectations, downward-adjusted earnings estimates, disappointing retail sales, and Capitol Hill's failure to resolve serious fiscal issues."
This week Fed Chair nominee Janet Yellen starts confirmation hearings, but she is likely to continue postponing tapering. That increases the prospect of a stock sell-off similar to - but of greater magnitude than - the post-QE1 and QE2 sell-offs, Armiger believes.
"This time around the natural sell-off may be exacerbated by investors who still bear the scars" of sell-offs in 2000-02 and 2008 and will jump ship at the first signs of market weakness, he adds. With many stocks overpriced, he says, "late in 2013, the seeds of a pullback are in plain sight."
November 12, 2013 (WSJ)
U.S. Stocks Inch Higher
"We've been told all along not to make much of one month's numbers, especially a noisy month like we had, but this is a momentum market," said Scott Armiger, president of Christiana Trust, which oversees about $5.6 billion. "This market has just been shrugging off any negative news and really rolling on the good news."
Mr. Armiger said the Fed's pullback may happen before the end of the year. He said he is worried the stock market has gotten too far ahead of itself given the year's steep gains, and its heights aren't justified by current levels of economic growth.
"We're participating [in the market] and enjoying it … but it doesn't feel real enough for us," he said, adding that it "would not be unreasonable" to see a correction.
October 21, 2013 (Reuters)
Wall Street Nearly Flat On Lackluster Earnings
"The push for healthcare is going to be greater as more people age and come online. We just don't know how it's going to affect the bottom line," said Thomas Nyheim, vice president and portfolio manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware.
S&P sectors were mixed, with healthcare stocks making the biggest decline, down 0.6 percent. Nyheim, who manages investments in healthcare stocks, said the sector will be unpredictable until the effects of President Obama's health care law play out.
October 16, 2013 (WSJ)
Optimism Still Abounds For Financial Stocks
Scott Armiger, chief investment officer at Christiana Trust, which oversees $5.6 billion, holds a smaller-than-usual stable of financial stocks at the moment. He says he may be looking to raise his weighting in the coming quarters.
“It’s a credit-driven society. As the economy gains momentum, you would think the financials would fare well,” he said.
But he said he’d like to see more confidence among small businesses and consumers first. “If they were gaining confidence, they’d be going to their banks to borrow and expand. But we just don’t see that kind of confidence at the small-business level that would translate to better bank earnings.”
October 16, 2013 (WSJ)
When Budget Deal Comes, Stocks Seen Having More Room to Rally
Not all are as optimistic. Scott Armiger, chief investment officer of Christiana Trust in Greenville, Del., which oversees $5.6 billion, says a resolution is already priced in, and sees another potential fly in the ointment: corporate earnings.
A deal in Washington would return investor attention to third-quarter earnings, which are expected to show an increase of just 0.8%, according to FactSet.
“The estimates have been coming down significantly for a while,” he said. “It’s still very, very early, but we’re not getting any impressive hits.”
October 8, 2013 (Reuters)
Investors Take Profits in High-flying Nasdaq Names
"'Everyone thinks a deal will be done and we will...avert a default, but the longer it goes the possibility they won't get anything done in time increases and traders probably don't want to be holding the highest P/E stocks,' said Scott Armiger, Portfolio Manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware."
October 4, 2013 (Reuters)
US Stocks - Wall Street Gains, Goverment Shutdown Extends For Fourth Day
"Nyheim, who owns health care stocks, noted the industry's performance may be attributed to the opening of state healthcare exchanges on Tuesday and the possibility that medical device manufacturers may have their taxes lowered from rates currently in the Affordable Care Act, also called Obamacare."
"'In the short term, it may be the exchanges, but we look at it much more long term. And there may be some kind of deal where the medical device manufacturers won't have the same tax,' said Nyheim."
September 24, 2013 (Reuters)
US Stocks - S&P 500 Inches Up After String of Declines
"'Maybe people are taking a longer-term look. I think that's healthy,' said Scott Armiger, chief executive officer of Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware."
September 24, 2013 (Wall Street Journal)
E.T. Cashing Out After Post-Fed Rally
"Scott Armiger, chief investment officer of Christiana Trust in Greenville, Del., which oversees $5.6 billion., is not only worried about valuations, but also about the pace of economic growth and job creation. He recently sold out of some industrial companies, including Danaher Corp., and some stocks in the telecommunications sector as well as the technology firm Equinix Inc."
"'Some people feel guilty if they hold cash in this environment,' he said. 'We don't feel that way. If we think we can get better prices down the road for companies, we'll wait.'"
September 23, 2013 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stocks Fall as Banks Slump, Investors Weigh Fed Speeches
"'At some point, investors are going to say, 'What's underpinning this strong rally? We need some solid numbers,' ' Scott Armiger, chief investment officer at Christiana Trust in Wilmington, Delaware, said in a phone interview. The firm has $6 billion under administration. Fed policy makers are trying to neutralize the market. This time Bernanke said no tapering and they're all running out and saying 'wait a minute, folks, don't get carried away.'"
September 16, 2013 (Wall Street Journal)
New Hope for Financial Stocks
"'To be sure, higher rates aren't completely good.' Scott Armiger, chief investment officer at Christiana Trust, which oversees $5.6 billion in assets for individuals and institutions, points to a slowdown in the mortgage market. Mortgage applications fell 13.5% in the week ended Sept. 6 from the previous week, the Mortgage Bankers Association said last week."
"Mr. Armiger also worries about legal and regulatory battles ahead for large financial companies, along with soft U.S. growth. He owns shares of J.P. Morgan Chase JPM +0.67%& Co., the nation's largest bank by assets, and Wells Fargo WFC -0.17%& Co., the top U.S. home lender. But he said J.P. Morgan's legal troubles and Wells Fargo's exposure to the mortgage market make him leery of taking bigger positions."
"Mr. Armiger says he favors insurance companies Aflac Inc. AFL +0.28%and Genworth Financial Inc., GNW -0.81%and will continue to hold a relatively low concentration of financial stocks until economic growth picks up."
August 9, 2013 (FOXBusiness)
9 Mistakes First-Time Investors Make
"'After the last 18 months, where we have seen the markets go up by 18%, it would be greedy to expect to make a lot more over the next six months,' says Scott Armiger, certified financial advisor and vice president of Christiana Trust."
"'It's good to be in both individual stocks and mutual funds,' says Armiger. 'Mutual funds and ETFs can be a good starting point for new investors because they provide instant diversification.'"
"'People watch their stocks every day and torture themselves and feel the need to make changes, but we always try to remind our clients, if you wait long enough you will get a return,' says Armiger."
"'The sooner the better,' says Armiger."
July 14, 2013 (Reuters)
RPT- Wall Street Week Ahead: As Earnings Take Over, Fundamentals to be Tested
"'The Fed has been able to prevent a big selloff so far, but eventually the economy will have to catch up to the market or the market will fall back to match the economy,' said Scott Armiger, who helps oversee $5.6 billion as portfolio manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware."
July 10, 2013 (Dow Jones)
Stocks Turn Positive After Fed Minutes
"'I'm more focused on earnings,' said Scott Arminger, portfolio manager with Greenville, Del.-based Christiana Trust, as the second-quarter corporate reporting season heats up, but 'I'm not expecting much' in terms of earnings strength, he added. The fund has kept a defensive posture this year and still favors health-care and consumer-staples stocks."
"'Earnings have said one thing and the market has done something else, because it's been so Fed-focused,' he said."
June 27, 2013 (Bloomberg)
S&P 500 Has Best 3-Day Rally Since January on Economy
"'The market was pessimistic and overreacted to the downside last week on Bernanke's comments,' said Thomas Nyheim, a Wilmington, Delaware-based fund manager for Christiana Trust, which oversees about $16 billion."
"Federal Reserve board members are coming out and saying they won't taper quantitative easing until the last few months of this year, if this year. The market is much more pleased with what it's hearing and now it's retracing its gains."
June 17, 2013 (The Philadelphia Inquirer)
The Investment Haze Around The Fed and Its Stimulus
"'The sooner QE (qualitative easing) ends, the better,' says Scott Armiger, chief investment officer of Christiana Trust, a division of WSFS Bank, with more than $15 billion in assets."
"Christiana Trust's Armiger says his portfolio strategy hasn't changed much in the past year. The firm is still recommending shares of healthcare companies, consumer staples, and industrials like United Technologies (UTX), and does not own Treasuries at all for its clients. The Federal deficit looks better than it really is, due to the many investors who took capital gains before the new tax rates kicked in. In the meantime, serious discussions about trimming the budget have all but stalled, as Congress takes its habitual nap between fiscal crises."
"'There's enough good paper out there, that you can do better with municipal bonds or brokerage CDs,' Armiger says. His firm likes munis issued by states such as North Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, and Georgia, but not Illinois or California. He's leery of buying munis like Puerto Rico, Guam or the U.S. Virgin Islands, saying 'those islands have issues.'"
"Meanwhile, the currency devaluations around the world have him worried."
"'Japan has joined us in a race to the bottom. Equity investors seeking silver linings should be careful not to conflate fair value with wishful thinking,' Armiger said. 'This is a risky time for rosy scenarios.'"
"Japan's devaluation of its yen will ultimately hurt U.S. manufacturers. 'We looked at some Fed districts like New York, Philadelphia and Dallas and they showed contraction in May. The cheap yen makes it more expensive for us to export,' Armiger added."
May 17, 2013 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stocks Advance on Leading Indicators, Sentiment Data
"'You've got the leading indicators helping the market today,' Thomas Nyheim, a Wilmington, Delaware-based fund manager for Christiana Trust, which oversees about $16 billion, said in a phone interview. 'We're seeing good signs for the economy, you're getting this grinding, slow growth that just keeps coming out.'"
May 11, 2013 (MarketWatch)
Stock Rally's Burden Shifts to the Consumer
"'With a lack of data in the past week, the market may face more of a headwind in the coming week as investors are hit with a torrent,' said Scott Armiger, manager of the Christiana Trust at Wilmington Savings Fund Society."
April 23, 2013 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stocks Gain as Caterpillar Rises Amid Commodities Rally
"'The home sales number was disappointing for the market but we still think the housing market is showing modest improvement,' Thomas Nyheim, a Wilmington, Delaware-based fund manager for Christiana Trust, which oversees about $17& billion, said in a phone interview."
April 11, 2013 (WSJ)
DJ Big Name Buyout Firms Show No Sign of Easing Follow-On Offerings?
"'[Private equity executives] have sharp pencils and know what they're doing,' says Scott Armiger, vice president of Christiana Trust, a wealth-management unit of WSFS Financial Corp. (WSFS) that oversees $15 billion in assets. 'I would look at it as another bit of evidence that stocks are more likely to go down than up,' Mr. Armiger said."
April 2, 2013 (CNNMoney)
Should Investors Be Worried About North Korea?
"'This market has been oblivious to bad new years this year. But North Korea would be somethign the Fed can't fix. It is the kind of bolt out of the blue risk that you can plan for,' said Scott Armiger, chief investment officer of Christiana Trust."
April 2, 2013 (CNBC)
Why the Stock Market's Best Weapon Could Run Out of Gas
“'You would think that corporate treasury departments would start to look at stock prices and earnings prospects, and they'd be smart to wait,' said Scott Armiger, chief investment officer at Christiana Trust, a Greenville, Del.-based company that manages $15 billion for clients. 'They'll be able to do their buybacks at a much more attractive price in the not-too-distant future.'"
February 14, 2013 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stocks Are Little Changed as Heinz Tempers Economy
"'There is global economic weakness and we're still constrained growth-wise,' Scott Armiger, a money manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware, said in a telephone interview. His firm has $15 billion in client assets. 'It's an environment where it's easier to buy growth than trying to grow organically.'"
February 8, 2013 (MarketWatch)
Dow Posts Weekly Loss; S&P, Nasdaq Extend Streak
"'That better-than-expected trade data may lead to revisions of fourth-quarter gross-domestic-product figures into positive territory,' said Scott Armiger, manager of the $500 million Christiana Trust at Wilmington Savings Fund Society.
"'That will make people have a little more confidence in GDP, and will probably revise the fourth-quarter number up a little bit,' said Armiger."
February 5, 2013 (Reuters)
Stocks Resume Climb
"'Stocks are really the only place investors can go for any kind of real return, and that's enough to have people continuing to come into the market, not just buying on dips but in general,' said Thomas Nyheim, portfolio manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Del."
December 26, 2012 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stocks Rise on Japan Speculation Amid Budget Talks
"'The finance center is still Washington right now,' Scott Armiger, a money manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware, said in a telephone interview. Christiana Trust has $14 billion in client assets. 'With the fiscal cliff, the questions are how bad will the deal be or will they just extend it and let the new Congress address it?'"
December 17, 2012 (Dow Jones Business News)
U.S. Stocks Open Higher Amid Budget Talks
"House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) proposed a tax-rate increase for the first time in the U.S. budget debate, according to reports late Friday. Senior Democrats described the offer as moving the talks away from gridlock. Investors have monitored the negotiations, aimed at averting a package of spending cuts and tax increases set to come into effect at the start of next year called the 'fiscal cliff.'"
"'This is the week that everybody's looking for a deal, and they'll celebrate anything,' said Scott Armiger, portfolio manager at Christiana Trust.
"An index measuring New York-area manufacturing showed shrinking activity in December for the fifth month in a row. The index, based on a Federal Reserve Bank of New York survey, was worse than the prior month's reading as well as economists' expectations."
October 18, 2012 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stock-Index Futures Decline as Jobless Claims Rise
“'We're are probably going to drift down today because of the jobless claims report,' Thomas Nyheim, a Wilmington, Delaware-based fund manager for Christiana Trust, which oversees about $13 billion, said in a telephone interview. 'Everything seems paused until we get clarity on the election since there are a lot of economic policy issues that need to be resolved before the end of the year.'"
October 10, 2012 (WSJ.com)
Blue Chips Down Triple-Digits
"'The earnings trend's just not strong enough,' said Scott Armiger, portfolio manager at Christiana Trust. 'We had a run on expectations. It's normal, it's healthy, to wonder where's the beef on this rally.'"
September 18, 2012 (Bloomberg)
U.S. Stocks Futures Are Little Changed Amid Europe Crisis
"'We're looking for the market to flatten out and hold where it is until the U.S. election,' Thomas Nyheim, a Wilmington, Delaware-based fund manager for Christiana Trust, which oversees about $13 billion, said in a telephone interview. 'Europe is an overhang that's still there on the U.S. market. Their debt crisis is not being handled, it's Band-Aids here and there. It's slowing us down.'"
September 13, 2012 (San Francisco Chronicle)
U.S. Stocks Advance Before Federal Reserve Policy Statement
"'The stock market has clearly been banking on more easing by the Fed,' Scott Armiger, a money manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware, which has $11 billion in client assets, said in a phone interview. 'There's been a slew of disappointing news over the last week or two, and nothing seems to have rattled the markets.'"
Septmeber 13, 2012 (Bloomberg)
Stocks Advance with Treasuries, Oil before Fed Decision
"'We have a stock market that's on welfare,' Scott Armiger, a money manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware, which has $11 billion in client assets, said in a phone interview. 'It's waiting for its next entitlement from the Fed and hoping it gets it today.'"
August 15, 2012 (Bloomberg)
S&P Fluctuates as Investors Weigh Manufacturing Reports
"'With the volume so light, it doesn't take much to get a movement in either direction,' Scott Armiger, a money manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware, which has $11 billion in client assets, said in a phone interview. 'The market just seems to be resisting all the worries here.'"
August 13, 2012 (WSJ.com)
Investors Shift Gears Towards Growth
"'We're conflicted,' said Scott Armiger, vice president and portfolio manager at Christiana Trust, who said he hasn't altered his portfolio amid recent gains and holds a skeptical view about the global economy. 'We're overweight some cyclicals, and we stay with companies with a global reach. But Europe's hurting, and we're underweight energy. We don't see the demand there for that right now.'"
August 12, 2012 (Bloomberg News)
S&P 500 Rises for Fifth Week Amid Optimism Over Stimulus
"'The risk-on trade is back,' Scott Armiger, a money manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware, which has $11 billion in client assets, said in a phone interview."
"'People think things are on a much better footing now. No matter what they do, it's either if the numbers are good, then we're recovering, or if the numbers are bad, the Federal Reserve will stimulate and we'll still move up.'”
August 11, 2012 (MarketWatch)
Retail earnings, data in investor focus
"'Expect some disappointment there,' said Scott Armiger, manager of the $500 million Christiana Trust at Wilmington Savings Fund Society. Reported jobs growth is doing little to support back-to-school shopping, especially with higher gasoline prices cutting into the consumer, who has seen few income gains this year."
"'With back-to-school shopping people are dialing it back, and we want to see if that is what's truly happening,' added Armiger. 'Also, $4-a-gallon gas prices are a tipping point for the U.S. consumer.'"
"The money manager also believes European leaders on vacation and the congressional recess are beneficial for markets. in that they are less likely to harm them. 'With nothing coming out of Brussels or Washington, we'll be looking out for some hiccup like Knight [Capital Group Inc.] KCG-5.54% next week,' Armiger said."
August 9, 2012 (WSJ.com)
U.S. Stocks Barely Budge
"'Personally, I didn't see it coming,' said Scott Armiger, vice president and portfolio manager at Christiana Trust. 'I have seen no macroeconomic improvement here, or across the pond, that would put everybody in a better mood. And yet everybody is in a better mood,' he said."
July 14, 2012 (MarketWatch)
Next week focus is on Citi, Google, 'fiscal cliff' Earnings outlooks, Bernanke testimony likely to hold sway
"'All eyes are on Washington because policy decisions are more of a driver of earnings than individual companies,' said Scott Armiger, manager of the $500 million Christiana Trust at Wilmington Savings Fund Society. In addition to events out of Washington, June retail sales data on Monday will be of particular interest to Armiger."
"'We care about retail because the consumer is two-thirds of the economy, and they seem to be struggling a bit,' Armiger said."
"Growth in retail sales may not necessarily translate into good news for the economy if one considers it's being financed by more debt, Armiger said. Earlier in the week, the Federal Reserve reported that U.S. consumers increased their debt in May by $17.1 billion, the biggest increase since December, and the ninth-straight monthly gain."
June 25, 2012 (Wall Street Journal)
"'I do think the banks are stronger today than they were before the crisis, but where were those sharp pencils [at Moody's] in 2006 and 2007?,' said Scott Armiger, vice president at Christiana Trust, a wealth-management unit of WSFS Financial Corp."
June 14, 2012 (FOXBusiness)
The markets charged higher on Thursday on optimism global central bankers are making preparations to stave off the potential financial pressures that may follow the Greek elections.
"Scott Armiger, Vice President and Portfolio Manager at Christiana Trust, said even if the moves come to fruition, they represent the wrong medicine for the illness."
June 8, 2012 (FOXBusiness)
America: The Root of America's Problems?
"'Until last Friday, any slippages here were blamed on Europe,' said Scott Armiger, vice president and portfolio manager at Delaware-based Christiana Trust, which oversees $11 billion in assets."
"However, Armiger says that the biggest concern to investors, and U.S. businesses, is the unraveling situation right here at home."
"'We're the best house in a bad neighborhood,' he said. 'We have a lot of homegrown challenges.' Armiger points to a labor market that by many estimates isnt expanding quickly enough to keep up with population growth as a fundamental factor that is making investors cautious. Echoing many Wall Street and academic economists, he says that at almost three years after the recession officially ended, the economy should be humming along,not struggling to maintain a 2% annualized growth rate."
"So whats the root of the problem? Armiger reckons it has a lot to do with business confidence. Businesses are sort of paralyzed right now,he said. For one, with a major election looming, executives are finding it tough to gauge what their tax picture will look like in the short run. On top of that, painful automatic federal spending cuts may be on the horizon if politicians fail to strike an agreement to cut the nations debt level."
"He is quick to point out that Washington has found itself in a quagmire as a result of problems that transcend specific political parties. Politicians across the spectrum have left businesses uncertain about the future."
"With the outlook murky, it has also made for a difficult environment in the financial markets. The Dow gave up all of its gains for the year last week on the back of the weak employment data, just to lurch back into the black this week."
"The volatility appears to be here to stay, according to Armiger. He has positioned portfolios he manages with mainly domestic, large-cap companies. Looking at specific sectors, he says it makes sense to play it safe, overweighting defensive sectors like health care and consumer staples, and shying away from energy and financials."
"'I'm optimistic in the long term … but there is a lot of chop in the middle,' Armiger said."
June 8, 2012 (CNN Money)
Shine On You Crazy Dimon: Is Worst Over for JPMorgan?
"Scott Armiger, a portfolio manager with Christiana Trust, a Wilmington, Del.-based investment firm that owns shares of JPMorgan, thinks the controversy around the trading loss has been overblown. Armiger said that in a worst case scenario, it could shave 20 cents off earnings per share. That's less than 5% of Wall Street's current consensus estimates of $4.36 a share for all of 2012."
"Armiger said one of the reasons investors are probably so worried is that JPMorgan Chase, up until now, had been the golden child among banks. It was the darling that could do no wrong since it held up much better than the likes of Goldman, Morgan Stanley (MS), Bank of America (BAC) and Citigroup (C) during the 2008-2009 meltdown. But he is not concerned that this is a sign of bigger problems at the bank."
"This is a black eye and investors are right to be concerned. But will this lead to a permanent impairment of the bank's capital or is it just a short-term management mistake? I think it's the latter," he said.
"Armiger said that JPMorgan Chase doesn't deserve to be lumped in that group."
"But Armiger isn't a bank bull, which is why I find his endorsement of JPMorgan Chase to be noteworthy. He said he's actually underweight the financial sector in his portfolio and that the only other banks he owns besides JPMorgan Chase are Wells Fargo and regional bank/credit card lender Capital One (COF)."
May 17, 2012 (Reuters)
Analysis: Will Mild Winter Mean Summertime Blues for Retailers?
"The thing that really jumped out to me on the personal income was the income growth had slowed on a year-over-year basis for four straight months - so I wasn't excited about seeing that," said Scott Armiger, portfolio manager at Christiana Trust in Greenville, Delaware."
"If we get any kind of pop, any kind of economic growth or some help for the consumers - a nice drop in gas prices - they will do very well," said Armiger.
April 30, 2012 (WSJ.com)
U.S. Stocks Appear to Lose their Fizz
"I know we're beating expectations, but compared to what these earnings were supposed to be nine months ago, we've fallen short," says Scott Armiger, a portfolio manager for Christiana Trust in Wilmington, Del., which oversees $11 billion in assets. "I'm concerned about earnings going forward."
April 18, 2012 (Reuters)
1st Quarter EPS 43 Cents vs 38 Cents Wall St Forcast
"They were anticipating a slowdown in their coal business and they tightened up their operating costs to beat earnings," said Thomas Nyheim, portfolio manager at Christiana Trust Co., based in Greenville, Delaware, which holds CSX shares.