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Whether it’s keeping up with trends or discussing interesting topics, we are dedicated to providing sound information to our clients. If there's a topic you would like to know more about, please let us know.

 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Stock market historians may dub 2017 the Xanax year. Traditional historians will probably choose a different moniker. Stock markets in many advanced economies have been unusually calm during 2017...

 

Monday, June 5, 2017

The bull market in U.S. stocks is getting really old! In fact, this bull has been charging, standing, or sitting for more than eight years. In April, it became the second longest bull market in American history...

 

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Is preparing for the future more important than enjoying the present? There is a lot to enjoy today...

 

Monday, May 22, 2017

How much is too much? There has been no shortage of drama since the new administration took office – legislative setbacks, controversial hiring and firing, and fiery tweets on various topics. Regardless, U.S. investors...

 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Does performance tell the whole story? American stock markets have delivered some exceptional performance in recent years... However, performance doesn’t tell the full story..

 

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Monday, May 8, 2017

Is it complacency? Exuberance? Uncertainty? Exhaustion? Insight? Intuition? Last week, all three major U.S. stock markets gained value and two reached new record highs. On the face of it, that’s great news for stock...

 

Monday, May 1, 2017

It was a good week to own stocks. Not all financial news was good news last week, but that didn’t prevent U.S. stock markets from moving higher...

 

Monday, April 24, 2017

Last week, investors multi-tasked, pushing both U.S. bond and stock markets higher. In March, the Federal Reserve raised the Fed funds rates for the second time in three months. Typically, we would expect interest rates to rise...

 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Why do shoelaces come untied? Engineers have solved many knotty problems, but it wasn’t until recently they unraveled the mystery of shoelaces and why they come undone ... and in other market news...

 

Monday, April 10, 2017

U.S. stock markets are sending mixed signals. If you look at the performance of the CBOE Volatility Index (a.k.a. the VIX or fear gauge), which is a measure of market expectations for volatility in the near future, it appears...

 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Americans reaching age 62 this year are leading a transition for future retirees. Starting in 2017, Social Security’s full retirement age (FRA) inches up from 66 to 67 in two-month increments over the next six years...

 

Monday, April 3, 2017

Happy birthday! Toward the end of the first quarter, the bull market celebrated its eighth birthday ... and the tooth fairy is awfully generous these days...

 

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

If you’re reading this on your smartphone, we trust you aren’t driving. Auto accidents have been on the rise in recent years, and insurance companies increasingly cite distracted driving as a key factor...

 

Monday, March 27, 2017

You’ve read it before – and it’s true. Markets hate uncertainty. Failure to pass the American Healthcare Act, which was supported by Republican leaders in Congress and President Trump, may have spooked U.S. stock...

 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

For decades, diversification has been a guiding principle of risk-sensitive portfolio design. That principle is based on the historical patterns of different asset categories responding differently to economic conditions...

 

Monday, March 20, 2017

Three steps and no stumble… Technical analyst Edson Gould developed a market rule of thumb known as ‘three steps and a stumble.’ It states stock prices may fall after the Federal Reserve raises...

 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The serialization of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations captivated readers from December of 1860 to August 1861. The novel chronicles the personal growth and development of an orphan nicknamed Pip. It features some...

 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Rate hike ahead…maybe. Last week’s U.S. employment report was better than expected. The United States added 235,000 jobs in February, which was a few more than economists had forecast. It may seem counterintuitive...

 

Monday, March 6, 2017

It was a grand slam. Major U.S. stock markets were positively euphoric following President Trump’s speech on February 28. Optimism about the new administration’s pro-growth policies propelled the four major U.S....

 

Monday, February 27, 2017

Once upon a time, five blind men discovered an elephant. Each man examined a different part of the elephant and formed a unique impression about the animal. One believed an elephant was like a pillar, while another decided...

 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Up! Four major U.S. benchmark stock indices closed at record highs for four consecutive days during Valentine’s Day week, reported Financial Times (FT). To date, positive corporate earnings and robust investor...

 

Monday, February 13, 2017

What’s the word ‘phenomenal’ worth? It all depends on who says it. Barron’s shared Wilshire Associates’ calculations which indicated the word was worth about $175 billion – the...

 

Monday, February 6, 2017

U.S. stock markets were unsettled last week. President Trump's executive order banning travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries to the United States for 90 days, in tandem with some disappointing earnings reports,...

 

Monday, January 30, 2017

An historic moment for U.S. stock markets… The Dow Jones Industrial Average surpassed 20,000 last week. Barron’s cautioned investors not to make too much of the milestone since, “There are only 30...

 

Monday, January 30, 2017

How many times did you login to a digital account today? It probably was more than once. Some people access digital sites via computer or tablet, but many others rely on their phones. Deloitte recently reported the essentials of life...

 

Monday, January 23, 2017

Markets weren’t quite sure which direction to move last week. The Trump rally, which lost some steam, gained momentum early in the week. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index finished January 19, the day before the...

 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Around the world in a few paragraphs… The post-election adrenaline rush may be over in the United States. Barron’s reported: “The new year began with high hopes, with the bulls expecting the rally that...

 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

In 1964, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. received the Nobel Peace Prize. He accepted the award and took the opportunity to articulate his hope the civil rights movement would be successful, as well as his hope for all mankind:1 “…I must...

 

Monday, January 9, 2017

And, they’re off! Bullish sentiment helped world equity markets get off to a fast start last week....

 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

What a difference a year makes! At the start of 2016, investors were rather pessimistic and risk averse, preferring bonds to stocks. By the end of the year, they were quite optimistic and preferred stocks to bonds. In...

 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

…And, it may have some thorns. There’s something you should know about retirement. It’s not as easy as everyone makes it seem. Remember what life was like when you tied the knot? How about once you had children? Or, when you accepted a...

 

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Holiday Greeting - The Way You Eat in 2017 What can we expect in the New Year? If international food consultancy Baum + Whiteman is correct, we may find ourselves embracing new food trends including:1 • Restaurants without seats. We...

 

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Retirement IncomeHere’s a million dollar question: How will you transform your savings into income that will last throughout your retirement?1There are probably as many answers to that question as there are retirees. However, all...

 

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

There is a new filing deadline of January 31 for the 2016 forms W-2 and some 1099-Misc.

 

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Missed it by that much… The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) got within 13 points of 20,000 last Tuesday. It finished the week about 90 points below the vaunted milestone.

 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

We hope your holidays will be filled with family, friends, merry-making, and good cheer. One way to ensure a happy holiday season is to stay safe online. Here are a few tips that may help. 1. When using public Wi-Fi at a hotel, coffee...

 

Monday, December 19, 2016

The Federal Reserve put a hitch in the markets’ giddy-up last week. It wasn’t the Fed’s second interest rate hike in a decade that caused markets to stumble. December’s rate hike was old news...

 

Monday, December 12, 2016

This holiday season, investors’ enthusiasm for U.S. stocks has rivaled old man Parker’s passion for his major-award leg lamp in ‘A Christmas Story.’ Last week, three major U.S. indices hit all-time highs....

 

Monday, November 28, 2016

It’s a myth! According to WebMD, the amino acid L-Tryptophan is not responsible for Americans’ post-Thanksgiving food coma. The real culprit is overeating. So, last week’s post-feast sleepiness can be...

 

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Thanksgiving is America’s second favorite holiday,1 and it offers something for everyone. You can enjoy family togetherness, feasting, football, school plays, parades, gratitude, and, of course, shopping. If you’re a traditionalist,...

 

Monday, November 21, 2016

This time it’s the end. Really. Possibly. It seems like experts have been forecasting the end of the bull market in bonds for years – and they have been doing so. In July 2010, bond guru Bill Gross predicted the...

 

Monday, November 14, 2016

Surprise! Markets were remarkably sanguine following the election of Donald Trump to the presidency of the United States. There was a moment of panic. As election results rolled in on Tuesday, Gold prices rose and Treasury...

 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

“American soldiers in battle don’t fight for what some president says on TV. They don’t fight for Mom, apple pie, the American flag. They fight for one another. ”1 Stars and Stripes used the words of Lieutenant Colonel Harold “Hal”...

 

Monday, November 7, 2016

Markets hate uncertainty – and that may create opportunities. Last week, investors experienced another bout of election jitters, and the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index fell for the ninth straight session...

 

Monday, October 31, 2016

During July 2016, Pew Research reported almost 60 percent of Americans were suffering from election fatigue. They weren’t uninterested in the election. They were just worn out by never-ending news...

 

Friday, October 28, 2016

In the 1970s, a TV episode of The Odd Couple taught viewers never to assume.1 It’s a lesson we appear to have forgotten. Many Americans assume Medicare will provide financial assistance to help with long-term care costs in retirement....

 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

People of a certain age will remember ‘It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.’ The animated television special debuted in 1966,1 way back when there were only a few channels and you had to get out of your seat to change them from one...

 

Monday, October 24, 2016

“Verrrry interesting.” Arte Johnson’s catch phrase from Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In may not have described U.S. stock markets last week, but there were some interesting economic, cyber-security, and...

 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Tis the season! Third quarter earnings season, that is. Every quarter, companies report earnings to let investors know how profitable the companies were during the quarter. When profits grow, a company’s share...

 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Was it good news or wasn’t it? The U.S. unemployment rate ticked higher last week. The September jobs report showed the United States added 156,000 new jobs in September. That was 16,000 fewer than economists were...

 

Monday, October 3, 2016

The Markets were relatively calm during the third quarter of 2016, yet they delivered some attractive returns overall. In the United States, all three major U.S. indices posted record highs twice during a single 7-day period in...

 

Friday, September 30, 2016

That’s how much Americans had spent on pain relief medications and treatments when the Institute of Medicine (IOM) completed its report in 2011. If you factor in lost productivity, the economic cost of pain rose to more than $560...

 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

If you ask people what creates stress in their lives, money is often at the top of the list. Stress in America: Paying With Our Health found money was a somewhat or a very significant source of stress in the lives of 64 percent of...

 

Monday, September 26, 2016

The U.S. Federal Reserve left rates..... Find out. How will the president affect the stock market? Find out.

 

Monday, September 19, 2016

If it’s not one thing, it may be another. Economic data released last week will factor into this week’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) decision on whether to push interest rates higher in the United States...

 

Monday, September 12, 2016

Blame it on the central banks! After 44 consecutive sleepy, summer days when Barron’s reported the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index opened and closed without a 1 percent move in either direction, the index tumbled...

 

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Economists and market analysts have been thinking a lot about the Federal Reserve and the actions it may take...

 

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Labor Day weekend — the three days dedicated to celebrating American workers — marks the end of summer and, for some, the start of a new school year. It’s a good time to relax and ponder thoughts about work and play: “No work is...

 

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

You may not have heard of the Longevity Market but, if you’re older than 50, you’re one of its 74.9 million members.1 It may be easiest to think of the Longevity Market as another way of describing the Baby Boom and preceding...

 

Monday, August 29, 2016

Attention investors: U.S. interest rates may be moving up and it might happen this year. During last Friday’s speech at the Federal Reserve’s annual economic symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Fed Chairwoman...

 

Monday, August 22, 2016

Last week, Wall Street was speculating about monetary policy with the enthusiasm of commentators trying to predict who will bring home Olympic gold. The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) is expected to introduce another rate hike...

 

Monday, August 15, 2016

How do you measure stock market valuation? If you look at conventional measures – like price-to-earnings (P/E) ratios – then U.S. stock markets appear to be pricey. The Wall Street Journal reported trailing 12-month P/E ratios are high..

 

Monday, August 8, 2016

It’s déjà vu all over again! The Chicago Board of Options Exchange (CBOE) Volatility Index, also known as the VIX, tracks the prices of options on the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index. Since...

 

Monday, August 1, 2016

In the eight years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the world’s top 50 central banks have, on average, cut rates once every three trading days, find out why.... and what states are the most tax friendly, and what states are not?

 

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Most investors are familiar with the maxim ‘buy low and sell high.’ The unfortunate reality is that it’s a difficult principle to follow. Buying low often means investing in a company when its shares are priced below full value.Of...

 

Monday, July 25, 2016

Like a cool breeze on a hot day, the post-Brexit market rally has soothed investors. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), also known as the fear gauge, fell significantly during the past few weeks, according to CNBC.com...

 

Monday, July 18, 2016

“Start your engines,” was not in the Department of Labor (DOL)’s June Employment Report Summary, but it may as well have been. A positive jobs report revved investor optimism and sent U.S. stock markets sprinting higher last week.

 

Monday, July 11, 2016

When the yield on 10-year Treasuries finished last week at 1.37 percent, a record closing low, Barron’s called it a Kübler-Ross rally....

 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Would you accompany a group of high school students studying photojournalism and social change in Argentina? How about a group learning about language and culinary traditions in France? Does working for a season or two in a great place...

 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Second quarter ended with a spectacular finale of Brexit-inspired market volatility. Investors typically welcome sharp market movements with about the same level of enthusiasm that canines show for fireworks.

 

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Our Founding Fathers structured American democracy and left a legacy that has greatly influenced the world. This Fourth of July, see what you know about the Founding Fathers by taking this brief quiz. 1. Who were America’s Founding...

 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

You may be asking yourself whether that’s a trick question. After all, almost one-third of 18- to 34-year-olds are still living at home with their parents. It is, in fact, the most common living arrangement for this age group and a...

 

Monday, June 27, 2016

SURPRISE! Britain is leaving the European Union (EU) after 40 years of membership. Last Thursday, almost three-fourths of voters in Britain – about 30 million people, according to the BBC – cast ballots...

 

Monday, June 20, 2016

The world’s stock markets took it on the chin last week. A one-two punch was delivered with the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting leading and concerns Britain will leave the European Union following.

 

Friday, June 17, 2016

For several years, researchers at Boston College have been studying the experiences and expectations of fathers. As you might suspect, the way in which men understand the role of ‘Dad’ has been changing. While some still believe their...

 

Monday, June 13, 2016

The British may be leaving. The British may be leaving. Last week, the interest rate on 10-year U.S. Treasuries dropped to levels last seen in 2013. Why, you may ask, would bond yields move lower when Federal Reserve policy is to push...

 

Monday, June 6, 2016

Statistics means never having to say your certain, and that was certainly true last week. The employment report, which was released on Friday, was a bit short on jobs. Analysts had predicted employers would add about 162,000 new jobs...

 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

In medieval times, alchemists sought methods for transforming ordinary metals into gold. Today, just about every adult searches for a means of transforming savings into a retirement’s worth of income. Recently, they received help from...

 

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Everyone makes mistakes. Some people learn from them. In GMO’s March 2016 white paper, James Montier and Philip Pilkington continued to explore the Federal Reserve’s influence on the stock market.

 

Friday, May 27, 2016

Before the big barbecue, take time this Memorial Day weekend to honor the men and women who gave their lives fighting for our country. If you’re looking for a way to remember those brave Americans, here are a few suggestions:1 • Raise...

 

Monday, May 16, 2016

When is a door not a door? The answer, of course, is: When it’s ajar. Investors and analysts were trying to find the answer to a different riddle last week: When are strong retail sales not strong retail sales?

 

Monday, May 9, 2016

Reading economic portents can be tricky. For example, do signs that economic growth is slowing – like last week’s employment report, which was anemic relative to consensus forecasts, and first quarter’s...

 

Friday, May 6, 2016

Scientists have been mapping our mothers’ brains! They haven’t found eyes in the back of her head, or a way to help her worry less, but they are beginning to understand the mother-child bond better:1 “After centuries of observing...

 

Monday, May 2, 2016

“Which would you prefer to be: a medieval monarch or a modern office-worker?” If you immediately answered medieval monarch, take a moment to ponder life without “…modern dentistry, antibiotics, air travel, smartphones, and YouTube.”

 

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Super Bowl winners, the length of hemlines, and Sports Illustrated covers – all of these have been used to develop theories about the direction in which stock markets may be headed. Presidential elections and terms have also inspired a...

 

Monday, April 25, 2016

U.S. stock markets finished last week in heady territory. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 18,003. Its all-time closing high is 18,312. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was less than 1 percent below its intraday trading record...

 

Monday, April 18, 2016

Isn’t it remarkable that China’s growth is so consistent? A columnist from The Washington Post once opined that China “produces an astonishing number of astonishing numbers.” Last week’s GDP announcement...

 

Monday, April 11, 2016

We all learned a thing or two about Panama last week. The country is not the home of the Panama hat, which is made in Ecuador. However, it is the only place in the world where you can watch the sun rise on the Pacific Ocean and...

 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

If you receive a voice or email message from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), or you field a phone call from an IRS agent informing you “you owe back taxes” and “you better pay now or be arrested (or deported)...

 

Monday, April 4, 2016

It’s like déjà vu all over again! This wasn’t the first quarter, or even the first year, that bond markets have not performed in the way Wall Street strategists have expected. During 2014, bond yields were...

 

Monday, March 28, 2016

Are corporations in the United States struggling? In its cover article last week, The Economist (a British publication), suggested there is not enough competition among American companies. It pointed out: “Aggregate domestic...

 

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Understanding 2016’s Higher Medicare Part B PremiumsOne-in-seven Medicare enrollees will pay higher Medicare Part B monthly premiums during 2016. Their premiums will be $121.80 each month, an increase of 16 percent. While...