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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Remember the television classic, Green Acres? Eddie Albert, who portrayed a New York City lawyer, and Eva Gabor, who portrayed his sophisticated spouse, move from the big city to the country – and it’s not quite what they expected...

 

Monday, October 8, 2018

October 8, 2018 The Markets The stock market tends to be a leading economic indicator. Last week offered some insight to economics and stock market behavior. The U.S. unemployment rate reached its lowest level since 1969 and wages...

 

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

October 1, 2018 The Markets It wasn’t headline news… But, if newsprint was still popular, last week’s key economic news would have appeared below the fold. The Federal Reserve raised rates for the third time in 2018,...

 

Monday, October 1, 2018

Here’s a number that will knock your socks off: $400 trillion.1By 2050, the retirement savings shortfall in eight of the world’s largest economies is expected to reach $400 trillion, according to estimates from the World Economic Forum...

 

Monday, September 24, 2018

September 24, 2018 The Markets Did you hear the news? A tech company introduced a microwave you can turn on using Wi-Fi – as long as you have one of the company’s voice assistants at home, reported Kaitlyn Tiffany of Vox....

 

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Monday, September 17, 2018

September 17, 2018 The Markets All investors are consumers, but not all consumers are investors. The September installment of University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Survey reported Americans are feeling pretty optimistic....

 

Monday, September 10, 2018

September 10, 2018 The Markets Remember: Volatility is normal. Major U.S. stock market indices climbed into record territory during August. They gave back some gains last week. Peter Wells of Financial Times explained:...

 

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

September 4, 2018 - Revised The Markets Where is our country’s biggest export market? Markets were fired up last week after the United States and Mexico agreed on new trade rules. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index...

 

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Labor Day is set aside to celebrate the social and economic achievements of American workers. It was proposed as a holiday by Matthew Maguire in 1882 while he served as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York, NY. The labor...

 

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

How long will you live? How long will you live? It’s not a question anyone can answer with any certainty, and that creates a significant risk when planning for retirement. Your retirement may last for a long time, and you will need to...

 

Monday, August 27, 2018

August 27, 2018 The Markets Tick, Tock. Not everybody loves meetings and even fewer enjoy reading the minutes, but investors make an exception with the Federal Reserve. This week the Fed published the minutes from its August 1 meeting....

 

Monday, August 13, 2018

August 13, 2018 The Markets Let’s talk Turkey! So, how did a country that represents just about 1.4 percent of the world’s economy spark a global selloff? Turkey was once a rising star. The country’s Prime Minister...

 

Monday, August 6, 2018

August 6, 2018 The Markets Capital gains tax reform comes with a big price tag: $100 billion over 10 years. A capital gain is any increase in the value of an asset, such as an investment, a home, land, etc., between its purchase and...

 

Thursday, August 2, 2018

In recent years, investors have largely ignored geopolitical risks. Russia’s invasion of the Crimean Peninsula, the Brits’ vote to leave the European Union (EU), unrest in the Middle East, and other global events have not affected...

 

Monday, July 30, 2018

July 30, 2018 The Markets Is it a sugar rush or something more sustainable? Economic growth in the United States was strong during the second quarter. Gross domestic product (GDP), which is the value of all goods and services produced...

 

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

July 23, 2018 The Markets Last week, there was some good news and some notable news. Here’s the good news: Corporate earnings have been strong. As of July 20, 17 percent of the companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index...

 

Monday, July 16, 2018

July 16, 2018 The Markets Investors are becoming more discriminating. Trade tensions escalated as the U.S. administration expanded tariffs on Chinese goods last week. You wouldn’t have known by watching the performance of...

 

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

July 9, 2018 The Markets What a rollercoaster of a quarter! When it comes to the American Association of Individual Investors (AAII) Sentiment Survey, respondents tend to be more bullish than bearish about U.S. stock markets. The...

 

Thursday, July 5, 2018

In the olden days, the word ‘subscription’ typically was applied to just magazines and newspapers. Today, that’s not the case. Americans are buying everything from meal kits to baby products to vitamins by subscription. A McKinsey &...

 

Monday, July 2, 2018

July 2, 2018 The Markets There’s a bear in China – and it’s not a panda. The Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) Composite Index, which reflects the performance of all shares that trade on the Shanghai Stock Exchange,...

 

Monday, July 2, 2018

On July 4, 1776, the American colonies banded together and declared independence from Great Britain. The countries had been at war for more than a year due to a number of issues, particularly in regards to harsh taxation and a lack of...

 

Thursday, June 28, 2018

To the relief of many South Africans, Day Zero has been pushed back to 2019. Day Zero is the date on which Cape Town will run out of water, and its four million residents will begin to collect daily water rations of about seven gallons...

 

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

June 25, 2018 The Markets What time is it? The yield curve may be the pocket watch of economic indicators. It’s been around for a long time and it’s often right, but not always. The yield curve is the difference between the...

 

Monday, June 18, 2018

June 18, 2018 The Markets Deal or no deal? Last week opened with heightened trade tensions between the United States and its allies. It closed with the United States imposing new tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese goods. The Chinese...

 

Thursday, June 14, 2018

There are many perceived requirements of being a dad. “One of the jobs of a good dad is to help kids become a little tougher, a little more resilient, a little more separate…dads push kids to leave the nest; they brush off the dirt...

 

Monday, June 11, 2018

June 11, 2018 The Markets G whiz! Never before could the Group of 7 (G7) Summit have been mistaken for reality TV. The generally dignified annual meeting of leaders from the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the...

 

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

The words ‘bear market’ have been bandied about a lot lately. When you read or hear them, remember to respond the same way you would if you saw an actual bear in the woods – by staying calm and keeping your wits about you. A changing...

 

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

June 4, 2018 The Markets If the countries were instruments, last week sounded like a fifth grade garage band. World markets were buffeted by a clamor of good, bad, and unexpected news last week. Events that captured media and investor...

 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

May 29, 2018 The Markets Geopolitical uncertainty didn’t dent U.S. stocks last week. Geopolitics is the intersection of geography, economics, and politics. Last week, there were some fine examples of the ways geopolitical events...

 

Thursday, May 24, 2018

If you’ve ever composed a grocery list in your head while driving carpool and listening to your children discuss who got in trouble at school and why, then you know what it’s like to have your attention divided. If you’ve ever worked...

 

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

May 21, 2018The MarketsToo much? Too little? Or just right? U.S. stock markets were relatively calm, although they finished the week lower. U.S. Treasury yields hit a 7-year high and finished the week above 3 percent. While these were...

 

Monday, May 14, 2018

May 14, 2018 The Markets Splash! How do employers lure staff in a tightening labor market? The curly tail grubs and spinnies of the business world are higher wages and better benefits. During the past decade, the employment picture in...

 

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Mother’s Day is almost here! We all have moms and, whether they gave birth to us or not, they have helped us become the people we are today. Here are 10 reasons moms are so important, adapted from Psychology Today:11. She gave birth to...

 

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

May 7, 2018The MarketsWhat in the world?A lot happened last week. Some of the notable events included: • Trade talks between the United States and China. The talks were described as “frank, efficient, and constructive...

 

Monday, April 30, 2018

April 30, 2018 The Markets A meeting of the minds. The Federal Reserve and the U.S. bond market appear to be in agreement about the direction of interest rates. For more years than anyone cares to count, investment professionals have...

 

Monday, April 23, 2018

April 23, 2018The MarketsThe world is in debt. The April 2018 International Monetary Fund (IMF) Fiscal Monitor reported global debt has reached a historically high level. In 2016, debt peaked at 225 percent of global gross domestic...

 

Monday, April 16, 2018

April 16, 2018The MarketsWhat do you think?• Are you bullish, bearish, or neutral about the U.S. stock market? • Are U.S. stocks undervalued, overvalued, or fairly valued?• What is the biggest threat the U.S. stock...

 

Monday, April 9, 2018

April 9, 2018 The Markets You could almost hear the spurs jingling. Trade tensions ratcheted higher last week as the United States and China staked new positions on the not-so-dusty main street of trade. It was the latest round of...

 

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Technology is a life changer. GPS has improved interpersonal relations by eliminating arguments about asking for directions. Apps for car services, food delivery, video streaming, news media, and social media have changed the way we...

 

Monday, April 2, 2018

April 2, 2018The MarketsIn like a lion…Investors roared into 2018.During the first week of the first quarter of the New Year, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose above 25,000 for the first time ever. Less than two weeks later,...

 

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

“There’s no place like home.”1Conjuring an image of ‘home’ was a lot easier for Dorothy than it is for people who are on the cusp of retirement. After all, isn’t retirement supposed to be a new start? Aren’t retirees supposed to wave...

 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

March 26, 2018The MarketsWhy am I saving and investing?After a week like last week, it’s an important question. There are many reasons people save and invest, including to:• Live the life they want today and in the...

 

Monday, March 19, 2018

March 19, 2018The MarketsIt’s a good time for a gut check. Last week, after sliding lower for four days, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index recouped some of its losses on Friday. The reasons behind the week’s poor...

 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

It’s almost time to don green and gold. That’s right, March 17 is upon us. There’s more to the holiday, however, than eating corned beef and cabbage and celebrating the Irish. For instance, St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland,...

 

Monday, March 12, 2018

March 12, 2018The MarketsIt’s a bird…It’s a plane…It’s a labor shortage!There is little doubt the Millennial generation has been reshaping our world. One of the most remarkable aspects of this...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

March 5, 2018The MarketsAs Yogi Berra once said: It’s déjà vu all over again.Last week, global stock markets took a bit of a dip after President Trump announced a 25 percent tariff on steel and a 10 percent tariff...

 

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Here’s a number most people would like to see on an annual statement: 21.6 percent. That was the annual return for the Standard & Poor (S&P) 500 Index during 2017. In general, U.S. stock indices did quite well last year – and the year...

 

Monday, February 26, 2018

February 26, 2018The MarketsU.S. Treasuries are offering a lesson in supply and demand.Last week, the U.S. Treasury auctioned $258 billion in bonds. Treasury auctions are the way the United States government finances its debt. The...

 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

February 19, 2018The MarketsAs New York Fashion Week ended, inflation strutted its stuff. Ever since the Federal Reserve began raising the Fed funds rate in 2015, analysts have been anticipating higher inflation. The fact that price...

 

Monday, February 12, 2018

If you’re looking for a gift that will express your love better than chocolates or a bouquet of flowers, don’t fret. Trendhunter.com has some innovative and unconventional suggestions:• Literary love tattoos. Perhaps, you’d like Rainer...

 

Monday, February 12, 2018

February 12, 2018 The Markets Back to reality... After months of eerie calm, stock market volatility has returned. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) – a measure of how turbulent investors expect stock markets to be during the next...

 

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

February 5, 2018The MarketsIt was not a good week for stocks.Last week, stock markets around the world lost value. In the United States, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (S&P 500), Dow Jones Industrial Index (Dow), and NASDAQ all...

 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Here’s a riddle for you: Some people are reluctant to start me, unless I’m automatic. I’m frequently exhausted when I don’t roll over. I’m sometimes left behind. Retirees devour me. What am I? Answer: A retirement savings plan.New jobs...

 

Monday, January 29, 2018

January 29, 2018 The Markets The numbers are coming in. Publicly-traded companies report their earnings and sales numbers for the previous quarter in the current quarter. For example, fourth quarter’s sales and earnings are...

 

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

January 22, 2018The MarketsLast week, the United States government might as well have hung a sign on the front door of the Capitol that read, “Gone negotiating. We’ll be back in…however long it takes.”In 2013,...

 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Most Americans know Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist minister and the leader of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States until he was assassinated in 1968. Test your knowledge with this quiz about Dr. King.1. Before...

 

Monday, January 8, 2018

January 8, 2018The MarketsWhoosh! Bang! Flash! Fizz! Whistle!U.S. stock markets delivered their own version of fireworks to celebrate the New Year. During the first week of 2018, the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a new all-time high...

 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Fifteen years ago, a Health Services Research report described the challenges ahead for the United States as the Baby Boom generation aged into retirement. Four issues were paramount: 1) improving payment and insurance systems for...

 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

January 2, 2018The MarketsHow good was 2017?It was so good, the Standard & Poor’s (S&P) 500 Index finished in positive territory every month for the first time ever (on a total return basis), reported Barron’s. All major U...

 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The last bear market in bonds began in the middle of the last century and lasted for about 31 years. Some investors who bought bonds in 1950 locked in relatively low rates of return for a very long time. On January 1, 1950, 10-year U.S...

 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

New years bring new adventures, and 2018 is no different. To paraphrase Ed Sullivan: 2018 could be a really big year. Here are a few of the events we can look forward to:• Men’s World Cup in Russia. CBS’s power rankings put Brazil at...

 

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

December 26, 2017The MarketsIt’s time to turn your mind to taxes.Last week, President Trump signed tax reform, officially titled ‘An Act to provide for reconciliation pursuant to titles II and V of the concurrent resolution...

 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

“The holidays are often seen as a time of joy: ruddy cheeks, festive parties, and twinkling laughter, all wrapped in a warm, tinsel-framed glow. It’s the most wonderful time of the year! It may be the ‘season to be jolly,’ but not...

 

Monday, December 18, 2017

December 18, 2017 The Markets Here we come a tax-reforming… The reconciliation of Congressional tax reform bills proceeded apace last week, and Congress is expected to vote on the measure early this week. If tax reform passes,...

 

Monday, December 11, 2017

December 11, 2017The Markets “It's the hap- happiest season of all.”While holidays don’t make everyone happy, investors should be feeling festive. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index is up more than 18 percent...

 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

December 4, 2017The Markets What will it take to shake investors’ confidence?From the perspective of unsettling events, last week was jam-packed. North Korea claimed to have the capability to strike the United States with a...

 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

There is a simple and unsettling reality in the United States. Most Americans are not financially prepared for retirement. There is a simple and unsettling reality in the United States. Most Americans are not financially prepared for...

 

Monday, November 27, 2017

November 27, 2017 The Markets There was a lot to be thankful for last week. Stock markets around the world may have ripened to full-slip sweetness this year. Emerging markets have delivered the most attractive returns year-to-date. The...

 

Monday, November 20, 2017

The Markets Are investors more like tigers or African wild dogs? It appears investors – retail and institutional – have become rather like predators. They patiently stalk shares, waiting for a dip, and then they strike...

 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Thanksgiving is the mother of all family dinners. It’s a celebration of our great nation and the many blessings that occur when people unite together in the spirit of communication. As you’re gathered around the table this year, here’s...

 

Monday, November 13, 2017

November 13, 2017The MarketsSelling it overseas.Most of the companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index have reported third quarter earnings per share (EPS), which is the profit earned per share of stock outstanding...

 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

All too often, we assume the men and women who fought for our country can take care of themselves. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. There are some important ways ordinary Americans can help those who are returning from battle...

 

Monday, November 6, 2017

November 6, 2017 The Markets “Taxes are what we pay for a civilized society.”U.S. Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes’s statement is engraved on the front of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington...

 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

October 30, 2017The MarketsThe last full week of October was a box full of surprises. First, U.S. economic growth exceeded expectations. The devastation wrought by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria was widely expected to stifle U.S....

 

Monday, October 30, 2017

Retirement and Social Security are inextricably linked. Not only did Social Security help establish the official U.S. retirement age at 65, it also provides a significant portion of today’s retirees’ incomes. Retirement and Social...

 

Friday, October 27, 2017

Halloween is almost upon us! Whether you’re wearing a costume, decorating your yard/house, or handing out treats, you won’t be alone. More than 179 million Americans are expected to participate in 2017’s Halloween festivities – and...

 

Monday, October 23, 2017

October 23, 2017 The MarketsAnd the hits just keep on coming. Last week was the anniversary of Black Monday. On October 19, 1987, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow) lost 508 points, or more than 20 percent of its value, as it fell...

 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

October 16, 2017 The Markets There’s a new kid in town: narrative economics. Last week, Richard Thaler was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics. His work in behavioral economics and finance recognizes not all economic and...

 

Monday, October 9, 2017

October 9, 2017 The Markets Slow and steady... It has been 332 days since the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index experienced a 5 percent drop, reported Barron’s. If there isn’t a selloff on Monday or Tuesday, this...

 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

October 2, 2017 The Markets A lot happened during the third quarter of 2017, but not much changed. The bull market in U.S. stocks continued to charge ahead. Traditional measures of valuation continued to suggest the market is...

 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Smartphones are incredibly handy. That may be why about three of every four Americans own them.1 On average, smartphone users spend almost three hours a day – 86 hours every month – using their phones. They send texts and email,...

 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

How times change! In 1940, half of Americans finished their education in eighth grade. College degrees were relatively rare. Just 6 percent of men and 4 percent of women had one.1During the past 80 years, college has become far more...

 

Monday, September 25, 2017

September 25, 2017 The Markets Geopolitics, what is it good for? Absolutely nothin'! In January, Robert Kahn of the Council on Foreign Relations wrote in Global Economics Monthly: “Markets showed impressive resilience in the face...

 

Monday, September 11, 2017

September 11, 2017 The Markets Last week, the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and potency of Hurricane Irma dominated hearts and minds, but there were some diversions and some welcome news, too. The NFL kicked off its 2017 season with...

 

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Labor Day is about a lot more than the end of summer and the start of a new school year. The holiday, which celebrates American workers, became a federal holiday in 1894 and was created to recognize the contributions and achievements...

 

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

In a 2002 interview with Mike Wallace, former First Lady Nancy Reagan said she often reread the love letters written by her husband, former President Ronald Reagan. The letters, which had sustained and enriched their relationship,...

 

Monday, August 28, 2017

August 28, 2017 The Markets Hope floats. Optimism about possible pro-growth economic policies, including tax reform and deregulation, helped U.S. stock indices finish higher last week, reported Barron’s. It wasn’t all...

 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Markets Here, there, and everywhere… Markets around the world appear to be benefitting from global economic recovery. After pointing out the United States’ economy is the heart of the global financial system,...

 

Monday, August 14, 2017

The Markets North Korea may be a little country, but it can churn up big trouble. The possibility that verbal hostilities between the United States and North Korea could trigger geopolitical conflict had investors on the run last week....

 

Monday, July 31, 2017

July 31, 2017 The Markets There was some good news and some bad news last week. First, the good news: Thanks to consumer spending and an upturn in federal government spending, the U.S. economy grew faster from April through June this...

 

Friday, July 28, 2017

While some may be concerned about the iconic American meat that arrives in a rectangular 12-ounce tin (and is inexplicably popular in certain island states and American territories), more should be wary of its namesake – the spam that...

 

Monday, July 24, 2017

July 24, 2017 The Markets Do we have central banks to thank? Low interest rates, accommodative monetary policy, and improving economic growth have helped stock markets around the world reach record highs, reports Barron’s:...

 

Monday, July 17, 2017

July 17, 2017 The Markets It was a good week for a lot of stocks but not bank stocks. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) both finished at record highs last week. Barron’s...

 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The idea of Artificial Intelligence (AI) may bring to mind movies like Terminator, Wall-E, and Transcendence, but the reality of AI is expected to help people find answers to some significant issues. For example, a PwC survey found:1 •...

 

Monday, July 10, 2017

July 10, 2017 The Markets Things you may want to know… Last Friday, Financial Times (FT) published, ‘Five markets charts that matter for investors.’ Among the issues addressed in the charts were: • The bond...

 

Monday, July 3, 2017

July 3, 2017 The Markets This is the way the quarter ends – with a central bank scare. Central bankers are stodgy. They speak carefully. For many, reading the words ‘Federal Reserve’ is enough to cause boredom to set...

 

Friday, June 30, 2017

On July 4, 1776, the American colonies claimed independence from Britain. This declaration eventually led to the formation of the United States. As we celebrate the birth of our great nation, test your knowledge with this brief quiz.1...

 

Thursday, June 29, 2017

The bull market in U.S. stocks has been charging ahead for more than eight years.1 While that’s young in people years, it’s ancient in bull market terms. Since World War II, the longest bull market in U.S. stocks lasted for almost...

 

Monday, June 26, 2017

June 26, 2017 The Markets It has been a very good year, so far. Through the end of last week, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index posted 24 record highs and delivered returns in the high single digits. The MSCI World ex USA Index was...

 

Monday, June 19, 2017

June 19, 2017 The Markets All eyes on inflation! Inflation is the way economists measure changes in the prices of goods and services. The United States has enjoyed relatively low inflation for a significant period of time. Last week,...

 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

You’re probably familiar with ‘20 Questions.’ It’s a classic long-distance-car-trip game that encourages creativity and deductive reasoning. On this Father’s Day, try playing a version that can help you learn a lot more about your...

 

Monday, June 12, 2017

June 12, 2017 The Markets 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, reported...

 

Monday, June 5, 2017

June 5, 2017 The Markets 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

May 30, 2017 The Markets Is preparing for the future more important than enjoying the present? There is a lot to enjoy today. Last week, Financial Times wrote: “Wall Street ended an impressive week on a steady note – eking...

 

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Wouldn’t it be something if you could plump up your retirement savings as easily as you can put on a few pounds eating fast food? Here’s one way to do it: Open a health savings account (HSA). It offers a triple tax advantage and you...

 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for those who have given their lives in the service of our country. See what you know about Memorial Day by answering a few questions from an AARP quiz.1 1. Memorial Day was created to honor...

 

Monday, May 22, 2017

May 22, 2017 The Markets 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,...

 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

May 15, 2017 The Markets Does performance tell the whole story? American stock markets have delivered some exceptional performance in recent years. Just look at the Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) Index. Barron’s reported...

 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Changing diapers, arranging play dates, driving car pools, calming squabbling siblings, attending musicals and sporting events, chaperoning proms, coaching teams, helping with college applications…moms have a lot of responsibilities....

 

Monday, May 8, 2017

May 8, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, May 1, 2017

May 1, 2017 The Markets 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. Barron’s reported on the good news: “This past...

 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

We are all, inexorably, marching toward old age. By 2030, 72 million Americans will be age 65 or older.1 The good news is longevity has been improving, and people are remaining healthy and vibrant at older ages. The bad news is...

 

Monday, April 24, 2017

April 24, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

April 17, 2017 The Markets And the survey said... In late 2016, Natixis Global surveyed 500 institutional decision makers representing corporate pension plans, public pension plans, sovereign wealth funds, insurance companies,...

 

Monday, April 10, 2017

April 10, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, April 3, 2017

Some people may name a medical device or implant, such as a hearing aid, an artificial joint, or a pacemaker. Others may say they couldn't live without their electric bikes, GPS devices, tablets, or food processors. A surprisingly...

 

Thursday, March 30, 2017

It’s tax season! Every year, around this time, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) publishes its dirty dozen – a list of scams criminals use to try and ferret out personal information and/or steal money.1 For example, if you received an...

 

Monday, March 27, 2017

March 27, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, March 20, 2017

March 20, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

It has been said everyone in America is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day. Whether you have Irish ancestry or merely enjoy a good celebration, test your knowledge of the old country by taking this quiz. 1. What is Gaeltacht?1a. A region of...

 

Monday, March 13, 2017

March 13, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, March 6, 2017

March 6, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, February 27, 2017

February 27, 2017 The Markets 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,...

 

Monday, February 27, 2017

More than one-half of working Americans know little or nothing about Medicare costs.1 Not knowing can be expensive. On average, people who haven’t yet retired estimate they’ll spend approximately $50,000 on health care after retirement...

 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

February 13, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

Friday, February 10, 2017

The celebration of Valentine’s Day is attributed to Geoffrey Chaucer who wrote a poem about love and St. Valentine in the 1300s. Although this poem did not mention chocolate, the tasty treats have since become a Valentine’s Day...

 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The Markets 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

January 30, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

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...

 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

January 17, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

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...

 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

January 9, 2017 The Markets …And, they’re off! Bullish sentiment helped world equity markets get off to a fast start last week. Just name a country or region – developed markets, emerging markets, the United States,...

 

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...

 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

January 3, 2017 The Markets 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...

 

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...

 

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

December 27, 2016 The Markets 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. “The Dow has...

 

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

December 19, 2016 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, December 12, 2016

December 12, 2016 The Markets Dad: “Fra-gee-lay” …it must be Italian!Mom: I think that says “fragile,” honey.Dad: Oh, yeah. This holiday season, investors’ enthusiasm for U.S. stocks has rivaled old...

 

Monday, December 5, 2016

December 5, 2016 The Markets Flirting with higher interest rates. Last week, yields on 10-year Treasury bonds rose to a 17-month high of 2.44 percent, reported The Wall Street Journal, before retreating to finish the week at about 2.4...

 

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

For about 35 years, investors have enjoyed a bull market in bonds. At the start of 1982, the interest rate on 10-year U.S. Treasury bonds was 14.2 percent. By November 1, 2016, interest rates had fallen to 1.8 percent.1 Since bond...

 

Monday, November 28, 2016

November 28, 2016 The Markets 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...

 

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

November 21, 2016 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, November 14, 2016

November 14, 2016 The Markets 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...

 

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

November 7, 2016 The Markets 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...

 

Monday, October 31, 2016

October 31, 2016 The Markets It’s almost over… 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...

 

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....

 

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

The Markets “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

The Markets ‘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

The Markets 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...

 

Monday, October 3, 2016

The MarketsAs expected… The U.S. Federal Reserve left rates unchanged last week and markets celebrated. Across the globe, national stock market indices finished the week higher. In the United States, the Standard & Poor’s...

 

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 MarketsAs expected… The U.S. Federal Reserve left rates unchanged last week and markets celebrated. Across the globe, national stock market indices finished the week higher. In the United States, the Standard & Poor’s...

 

Monday, September 12, 2016

The Markets “We can never know about the days to come, but we think about them anyway…”--Carly Simon Economists and market analysts have been thinking a lot about the Federal Reserve and the actions it may take...

 

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The MarketsAttention 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...

 

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

The MarketsAttention 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...

 

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 22, 2016

The Markets 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...

 

Monday, August 15, 2016

The Markets 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...