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November 2, 2020
Optimism Drives Stocks in 3rd Quarter
We hope this quarterly newsletter finds you and your family safe and healthy during these unprecedented times.
2020 continued to be one of the most unpredictable years in memory, as markets rose to new all-time highs in the third quarter despite a resurgence in coronavirus cases, as stocks rallied thanks to a combination of even more accommodative Fed policy, hopes for a COVID-19 vaccine and a stronger-than-expected economic rebound, before markets declined moderately from those highs in mid-September.
The third quarter began with a resurgence of coronavirus cases in the United States, as new daily cases of COVID-19 smashed through levels seen in March and April, eventually topping out at a record 78,871 new cases on July 24th. But unlike March and April, stocks did not decline following the spike in new cases, as state governments enacted more surgical economic shutdowns instead of the wholesale lockdowns that occurred in the first half of the year. That change in strategy, combined with the fact that hospitalization rates and mortality rates of COVID-19 remained far below March and April levels, helped the stock market look past the increase in cases.
August 13, 2020
As tech continues to outperform and almost single handedly support the entire market, we’ve been hearing a lot of discussion in the financial media about this being another “tech bubble.” Given that, we wanted to examine the growing number of similarities between now and the late 1990’s.
Yield Curve: We previously pointed out that the August 2019 inversion in the 10s-2s, the swift rebound that ensued, and now sideways trend in the curve strongly resembles what happened in the late 90s before the bubble burst.
August 8, 2020
We began to cover the yield curve much more in depth last year as the 10s-2s yield curve spread threatened to fall below zero (more commonly referred to as inversion). And even though no one could foresee the outbreak of the coronavirus becoming a pandemic that ultimately crippled the global economy, the 10s-2s spread once again accurately forecasted the recession that was triggered by COVID-19.
July 5, 2020
Markets staged a historic rebound in the second quarter driven by an initial peak in the growth of coronavirus infections in April; economic reopenings across the United States and the rest of the world, hopes for a COVID-19 vaccine, and continued stimulus from global central banks, including the Federal Reserve.
June 29, 2020
Americans who have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic may now be able to access retirement accounts to help cover daily expenses, penalty-free.
An “eye-popping” $2 trillion in cash has been stashed in deposit accounts at U.S. banks since the COVID-19 pandemic first hit the country in January.1
June 16, 2020
Investor sentiment turned negative last week, amid an increasing number of COVID-19 cases in states where reopening has been underway as well as a subdued economic forecast from the Federal Reserve.
We have cautioned that the expectation for a quick economic recovery has driven much of the recent stock market gains, and that if the expectation of a quick recovery was put in jeopardy, we could see a pullback in stocks. That’s partially what happened yesterday as stocks suffered their worst losses in weeks.
RMDs Suspended in 2020 — How the new rules will work
The COVID-19 stimulus bill includes relief for retirees by allowing all RMDs due in 2020 to be waived. You do not have to take your RMD, which in turn can reduce your 2020 tax bill.
Anyone with an RMD due in 2020 from a company plan, like your 401(k) or 403(b) plans, or an IRA, qualifies, including beneficiaries, and including those who turned age 70 1/2 in 2019 and were required to take their first RMD by April 1, 2020.
April 2, 2020
First and foremost, we hope this letter finds you, your family and loved ones healthy and safe.
Market volatility surged in the first quarter to levels last seen more than a decade ago during the financial crisis, as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe and prompted the partial shutdown of most major global economies, including the U.S., EU and most of Asia. But while the pandemic was the main cause of the historic volatility we’ve witnessed over the past several weeks, the coronavirus outbreak was not the only source of volatility in the markets during the first quarter, as geopolitics and domestic political developments also impacted markets over the past three months.
Feb 4, 2020
Let me start off by saying we will only focus on the market’s political opinion. Our opinion is immaterial and not reflected in this article. Everyone should make their own choice and vote for the candidate that best represents his or her values and interests. With...
Dec 26, 2019
The SECURE ACT (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement ACT), was signed by President Trump on December 20, 2019 and set to go into effect January 1, 2020. This retirement legislation will impact many things and many people. We have listed five...
Dec 2, 2019
Stocks continued their relentless grind higher last week thanks to the usual suspect (non-specific, yet positive U.S.-China trade chatter). Yet the most important event of the week happened late-morning Friday and it’s a potentially trade negative, and that’s why...
Nov 22, 2019
Clearing the Fog: Where Are We on U.S.-China Trade? The headline noise surrounding U.S.-China trade and phase one has intensified over the past week, as conflicting headlines on the progress of negotiations are now hitting the tape daily. On Friday, Larry Kudlow...
Oct 18, 2019
Lost in all the focus on trade last week was a pretty significant move by the Fed, as the Fed announced a plan to begin buying Treasury bills every month, a move that prompted several financial news sites and analysts to declare that “QE” is back. But while the plan...
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