Twelve months ago, we were still in the longest economic expansion in U.S. history. Unemployment sat near historic lows, wages and income continued to strengthen, and inflation readings remained stable. Then, COVID gained a foothold on our shores. The human impact has been harrowing, with the nation on pace to lose more citizens to the pandemic than the 405,000 American souls lost in World War II. The public health response to the pandemic, imploring social distancing and mandating partial or complete lockdowns, worked initially to drive down infections and “flatten the curve.” However, these steps precipitated a severe economic crisis analogous to a natural disaster, as supply, demand, and financial shocks struck in unison. Individuals have lost livelihoods and businesses, and the burden has fallen most harshly on those least able to bear the losses.
Economic and Capital Markets Commentary
During the prior update, we provided a caveat to the nascent rebound in economic activity: a “second wave” in COVID infections. Suffice it to say, the rise in infections did portend a more vicious resurgence in cases than many expected. New cases have reached pandemic highs in some countries, including the U.K., France, and Spain. New restrictions on consumer and business activity have raised the specter of stalling recovery, though actions at this point have stopped short of the draconian lockdowns from earlier in the year.
TWST: Please give us a snapshot of Luther King Capital Management, a bit about the company’s history and business today.
Mr. King: Luther King Capital Management was founded in 1979 by Luther King, after he had served for nearly a decade at Lionel D. Edie. He stepped out on his own to establish a firm here in Texas. The initial clients were from the Fort Worth and Dallas area. The requests from initial clients were for him to establish a firm based in Fort Worth and to focus on the investment research as opposed to marketing.