It was a most unusual cultural revelation.
I’ve written recently about my delightful trip to Scotland. And the single most striking cultural insight I got there came from… menus.
My delightful wife and I ran and hiked the Speyside Way trail along with two very close friends. All that exercise means we didn’t skip many meals.
And after looking menus morning, noon, and night for over a week, I was struck by the pervasiveness of that uniquely Scottish dish – haggis.
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If you’re not familiar with this culinary oddity, let’s turn to Encyclopedia Britannica for a definition:
Haggis, the national dish of Scotland, a type of pudding composed of the liver, heart, and lungs of a sheep (or other animal), minced and mixed with beef or mutton suet and oatmeal and seasoned with onion, cayenne pepper, and other spices. The mixture is packed into a sheep’s stomach and boiled.
Whether you found that description gut wrenching or mouth watering (I’m guessing more the former than the latter…) I believe that this is the most ubiquitous main dish of any culture I’ve visited.
The Scots love them some haggis. They eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And that’s no exaggeration. Here is a fact – haggis was on every menu for every meal we ate in Scotland. From the fanciest five-star restaurant to breakfast at the tiny B&B, there was haggis.
Let me pause to say that I’d be very interested in your regional eating experience. Tell me in the comments about any foods you’ve seen at every meal or on every menu – especially main courses!
But back to the haggis. I’ll write about whether I tried it (and whether I actually hurled it) in an upcoming article. For today, there is a great reason I’m writing about organ meats wrapped in a sheep’s stomach: This quintessential “consumer staple” of Scotland connects directly to a big change happening in the markets right now. Let’s see how.
Current Sector Rotation – Where the Money Is Going
The term “consumer staple” is not one that we use every day. But it is the name of a very important sector in the market.
The broader market has been subdivided into sectors so that investors can understand – and invest in – more focused areas. One of those sectors is called “consumer staples” – and it’s been on the rise. Here’s how Investopedia.com describes this sector:
Consumer staples are essential products, such as food, beverages, tobacco and household items. Consumer staples are goods that people are unable or unwilling to cut out of their budgets regardless of their financial situation.
Think of companies like Walmart (WMT), Coca-Cola (KO) and Pepsi (PEP), Procter & Gamble (PG) (maker of Tide, Pampers, etc.) and Philip Morris (PM).
These are companies that are typically defensive investments – they go down more slowly than most stocks during market pullbacks, but that also typically don’t grow as fast in up moves.
Earlier this year, when the market was rebounding off the late March lows, the consumer staple sector lagged – even dropped.
And then within 6 weeks it really started to turn around and play “catch up” with the rest of the market.
Currently we see the Dow outperforming the S&P 500 as we see on this chart:
In addition we also see the consumer staples sector continue its push to the upside. (10-Minute Millionaire Insiders saw a chance at a 100% win in Pepsi during this move.) If you’re not “on the Inside yet, go here to learn how to get in…along with one of the latest strategies.
What’s this telling us? That this up leg in the market to new all-time highs is being led by the more defensive index (the Dow) and by more defensive sectors. And that means there is a new note of caution in the action.
Seems like we can learn something from a consumer staple like haggis after all…
Great trading and God bless you,