Rekenthaler Report: 3 November

The Italian way, Porsche takes hedge funds for a ride, and more.

John Rekenthaler 3 November, 2008 | 9:51AM
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What follows are the musings of Morningstar's Vice President of Research and sometime Morningstar columnist John Rekenthaler.

Mild in Milano
I spent the past week in Milan, attending an advisor conference and meeting with Morningstar clients.

It's a bit different out here. The Milan stock exchange has plunged like a stone, make no mistake about that. But like the 2002 bear market--and unlike in 2008--the drop in stock prices has yet to affect much of Italy's Main Street. The housing market is vulnerable but has yet to crack; thus, at this stage, Italy is not facing the cascade of failed mortgages, empty subdivisions, reduced consumer spending, and job cutbacks as in the U.S.

The public is also not as

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John Rekenthaler

John Rekenthaler  is vice president of research for Morningstar.