Monthly Archives: September 2018

POCKETBOOK Week Ending Sept. 22, 2018

  • FullSizeRender(40)
  • 50/50 Kinda

There are so many reports regarding the number of people who actually are investors in one form or another whether they be individual investors who have portfolios made up of stocks and/or bonds or both; folks who have opened then funded their 401k, IRAs or ROTH IRAs; owners of various kinds of annuities; or whatever’s can be confusing.

To keep things as simple as possible, let’s call it about a  50/50 divide: 50% of people are invested in the markets and 50% aren’t.

That’s not a good split no matter how you count it: If half of all of us don’t have any investments that’s for sure going to be one huge problem come retirement age—or old age in general. This financially challenged issue may seem as though it’s an individual one to those rolling in dough or who have plump portfolios, but in reality it’s going to create lot of problems individually and have a major impact on our United States coffers.

The picture isn’t a pretty one because a 50/50 split might sound like a fair split, in the world of money reality, it isn’t.

According to the Federal Reserve re 2016 numbers, America’s top10% of households are about 120 times wealthier than the lower middle class. And, the top 10% had an average net worth of $5.34 million; the lower middle class had $44,700.  That  huges spread in household wealth is in direct correlation to those who are  investors vs  those who are not.

I’m hoping your portfolios are plump enough to help any family and/or friends who may need financial assistance now and in the future.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Two new record year-to-date all-time highs were reached by both the DJIA and S&P 500 indices last week. That’s a big yippee for many investors.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for the four major indices—DJIA, S&P 500, NASDAQ and the Russell 2000— including the dates each reached new highs. Data is according to CNBC.com and based on prices at the close of business on Friday, Sept. 21, 2018.

DJIA 8.19% YTD up substantially from previous week’s return of 5.81%.

  • 1 yr Rtn 19.61% a jump up from the previous week 17.90 %

Most recent DJIA a new ALL-TIME CLOSING HIGH was reached on Sept. 21, 2018 of 26,796.16. The previous high was reached on January 26, 2018 of 26,616.71.

 

-S&P 500 9.58% YTD a jump up from last week’s 8.65%

  • 1 yr. Rtn 17.08% up from last week’s 16.40%

The S&P 500 reached a BRAND NEW CLOSING ALL-TIME HIGH on Sept. 21, 2018 of 2,940.91. The previous closing high was reached on August 29, 2018 of 2,916.50.

 

-NASDAQ 15.70% YTD down from last week’s 16.03%

  • 1yr Rtn 24.36% down a tad from last week’s 24.59%

Nasdaq reached a BRAND NEW 52-week CLOSING HIGH on August 30, 2018 of 8,1333.30. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 7,949.71.

 

-Russell 2000 11.51% YTD down from last week’s 12.13%

  • 1yr Rtn 18.57% down from last week’s 20.82%

The Russell 2000 reached a BRAND NEW 52-week ALL-TIME HIGH on August 31, 2018 of 1,742.09. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 1,726.97.

 

-Mutual funds

Quite like the average equity fund’s y-t-d performance has moved up a bit. But, no data to confirm it and/or by how much. New Lipper figures will be posted as soon as they are received.

Until then below is last week’s commentary:

Moving up a bit.

At the close of business on Thursday, Sept. 13,2018, the average total return for funds that fall under the U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading was 8.96%. 8.26%. That’s up a bit from the previous week’s 8.26%, according to Lipper.

It continues to be a Small-Cap Growth Funds world, fund here now up on average 22%.

Comparing that group’s return with 25 of the largest individual funds around, (largest in terms of assets) and it’s the Invesco QQQ Trust 1 with the best y-t-d performance at 18.92%

Fifteen of the 25 funds in that listing have returns over 10%. Impressive.

Visit www.allaboutfunds.com for more information about how various equity and fixed-income funds have rewarded investors over the short-and long-term, based upon Lipper data. Short-term meaning weekly and monthly performance returns; longer-term includes quarterly, year-to-date, 1-yr, 2-yr, 3-yr and 5-yr returns.

 

  • Mortgage Rates

They’re creeping up.

Anyone keeping an eye on the Treasury’s long bond—that would be the one that matures in 30 years—has seen its yield move up. And as it moves up so do things like the interest earned on things like money market funds or CDs. And, more importantly, in the amount of money needed to pay any variable rate or fixed-income mortgage.

More to come.

-30-

 

 

 

Advertisements

POCKETBOOK weekend Sept. 15, 2018

 

MT-1A_BAUER_TZ.JPG

•Big Debts

Carry on all you’d like about the economy and a bull market that just doesn’t know when to stop running but make sure not to forget about, or overlook, the debt President Trump’s policies have put in place.

Each of us knows how important facing the debt we have in our personal lives is—and what happens when we overlook it. The same is true for government debt spending: debts need to be addressed and paid back.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, the government has spent a whole lot more during the past 11 months than it has brought in from taxes and revenues.

How much more? $895 billion more. That’s “b” as in “billion”  not “m”. And is a figure that reflects an increase of  33 percent.

Debts matter.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Year-to-date gains still gaining.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for the four major indices—DJIA, S&P 500, NASDAQ and the Russell 2000— including the dates each reached new highs. Data according to CNBC.com and based on prices at the close of business on Friday, Sept. 14, 2018.

DJIA 5.81% YTD up from previous week’s return of 4.84%.

  • 1 yr Rtn 17.90% down from the previous week 18.97 %

Most recent DJIA all-time high was reached on January 26, 2018 of 26,616.71. The previous high was reached January 18, 2018 was 26,153.42.

 

-S&P 500 8.65% YTD up from last week’s 7.41%

  • 1 yr Rtn 16.40% down a hair from last week’s 16.41%

The S&P 500 reached a BRAND NEW CLOSING ALL-TIME HIGH on August 29, 2018 of 2,916.50. The previous closing high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 2,876.16.

 

-NASDAQ 16.03% YTD up from last week’s 14.47%

  • 1yr Rtn 24.59% up from last week’s 23.52%

Nasdaq reached a BRAND NEW 52-week CLOSING HIGH on August 30, 2018 of 8,1333.30. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 7,949.71.

 

-Russell 2000 12.13% YTD up from last week’s 11.57%

  • 1yr Rtn 20.82% down from last week’s 22.49%

The Russell 2000 reached a BRAND NEW 52-week ALL-TIME HIGH on August 31, 2018 of 1,742.09. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 1,726.97.

 

-Mutual funds

Moving up a bit.

At the close of business on Thursday, Sept. 13,2018, the average total return for funds that fall under the U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading was 8.96%. That’s up  from the previous week’s 8.26%, according to Lipper.

It continues to be a Small-Cap Growth Funds world, as funds here now up on average 22%.

Comparing that group’s return with 25 of the largest individual funds around, (largest in terms of assets), and it’s the Invesco QQQ Trust 1 with the best y-t-d performance at 18.92%

Fifteen of the 25 funds in that listing have returns over 10%. Impressive.

Visit www.allaboutfunds.com for more information about how various equity and fixed-income funds have rewarded investors over the short-and long-term, based upon Lipper data. Short-term meaning weekly and monthly performance returns; longer-term includes quarterly, year-to-date, 1-yr, 2-yr, 3-yr and 5-yr returns.

 

  • Yahoo!! Your SS check is going up!

It’s mo money time, almost.

Every October, along with the ghosts and goblins of the season, the Social Security Administration announces what their cost of living (COLA) adjustments for the coming year will be.

And there is good news for those of us who count on every penny from that government check: It’s going up 2.8%.

Translating that into dollars and cents, the average Social Security check in 2018 is $1400. Beginning in January 2019, if the world doesn’t fall apart by then, that check will see an increase of $39.

While that’s the good news, the not-so-hot good news is that inflation is running around that same amount.

Bottom line: Don’t expect that extra 2.8% increase to have much purchasing power next year.

-30-

 

 

POCKETBOOK: Week ending Sept.8, 2018

img_58852.jpg
The S&P 500 has rewarded investors for a long time. But nothing lasts forever as the chart above shows.
  • So how you doin?

Forget what talking heads say about the markets, unemployment, our economy and place in the world. Talking heads are just talking heads reading scripts.

What counts in all of this is how your investments are performing. Your own personal investments be they in retirement or personal accounts.

Mine aren’t up 14% like the NASDAQ was year-to-date as of last week. Or up 7% like the S&P 500. Nope. A couple of months ago my performance was better than either of those two figures. Now, I’m underwater for the year. Rats.

If you’re in a similar reward position, perhaps it’s time to do some thinking and answering a few questions like:

-Are the loses greater than I can handle? Like over 10% for each holding?

-Can I handle a 10% or 20% or more loss on any or on my overall holdings?

-No matter the size of the loss (or gain for that matter) do I still want to own these companies?

-How long was I planning on owning each security?

-If I decide to sell any of my positions, what kinds of costs will that incur—like taxes and commissions?

-Finally, what will I do with the proceeds?

Unless you’re a robot, deciding if and/or when to sell a stock takes some serious considerations.

Happy thinking.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Year-to-date numbers have changed—and not in an upward direction.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for the four major indices—DJIA, S&P 500, NASDAQ and the Russell 2000— including the dates each reached new highs. Data if according to CNBC.com and based on prices at the close of business on Friday, Sept.7, 2018.

DJIA 4.84% YTD down from previous week’s return of 5.04%.

  • 1 yr Rtn 18.97% up from the previous week 18.30 %

Most recent DJIA all-time high was reached on January 26, 2018 of 26,616.71. The previous high was reached January 18, 2018 was 26,153.42.

 

-S&P 500 7.41% YTD down a lot from last week’s 8.52%

  • 1 yr Rtn 16.41% down from last week’s 17.39%

The S&P 500 reached a BRAND NEW CLOSING ALL-TIME HIGH on August 29, 2018 of 2,916.50. The previous closing high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 2,876.16.

 

-NASDAQ 14.47% YTD way down from last week’s 17.47%

  • 1yr Rtn 23.52% down from last week’s 26.15%

Nasdaq reached a BRAND NEW 52-week CLOSING HIGH on August 30, 2018 of 8,1333.30. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 7,949.71.

 

-Russell 2000 11.57% YTD way down from last week’s 13.37%

  • 1yr Rtn 22.49% down from last week’s 23.87%

The Russell 2000 reached a BRAND NEW 52-week ALL-TIME HIGH on August 31, 2018 of 1,742.09. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 1,726.97.

 

-Mutual funds

And we are down.

At the close of business on Thursday, Sept. 6,2018, the average total return for funds that fall under the U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading was 8.26% That’s down from the previous week’s 9.12 %, according to Lipper.

Small-Cap Growth Funds still lead the performance way while off a bit from the previous week—21.10%. The week before that figure was 21.86%.

Around the world, the average World Equity Fund return fell substantially: the average fund under this heading was down -5.14% ending last week. The week previous that figure was -2.04%.

Visit www.allaboutfunds.com for more information about how various equity and fixed-income funds have rewarded investors over the short-and long-term, based upon Lipper data. Short-term meaning weekly and monthly performance returns; longer-term includes quarterly, year-to-date, 1-yr, 2-yr, 3-yr and 5-yr returns.

 

  • One Opinion

From CNBC’s “Trading Nation” program, B. Riley FBR’s Arthur Hogan thinks that if the U.S. works out its trade issues these three industries could be good for investors over the next 16 months:

-Technology

-Health care

-Financials

Nothing earth shattering there.

On the other hand, Hogan expects the S&P 500 to hit 3200 by the end of 2019.

Time will tell.

 

-30-

 

 

POCKETBOOK: Week ending Sept.1, 2018

FullSizeRender(31)

  • Happy Labor Day

 Let’s begin with the good news: It’s Labor Day. A national holiday that’s been recognized by rewarding some working Americans with a day off of work —but not all of them.

It’s also a long holiday weekend that marks the end of summer for many. And it’s traditionally a good reason for friends and family to get together, eat and shop the multitude of Labor Day sales going on.

The bad news is that gas prices are at a 4-year high now and laboring hasn’t paid off too much for many: Real wages are lower now than they were one year ago. One reason:  While some salaries have increased over the past year, those increases haven’t mattered much if anything because they haven’t kept up with inflation. Bummer.

As for President Trump’s big tax breaks, few, very few, workers have gotten any benefit from it. Or, are likely to when 2018 taxes are due in 2019.

For a little history about how Labor Day got started, you’ll find an informative read in USA TODAY at:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2018/09/02/labor-day-why-do-we-celebrate-holiday/1180558002/

Some excerpts from it include:

-“In the late 1800s, the state of labor was grim as U.S. workers toiled under bleak conditions: 12 or more hour workdays; hazardous work environments; meager pay. Children, some as young as 5, were often fixtures at plants and factories…..

“The dismal livelihoods fueled the formation of the country’s first labor unions, which began to organize strikes and protests and pushed employers for better hours and pay. Many of the rallies turned violent.”

-“On Sept. 5, 1882 — a Tuesday — 10,000 workers took unpaid time off to march in a parade from City Hall to Union Square in New York City as a tribute to American workers. Organized by New York’s Central Labor Union, It was the country’s first unofficial Labor Day parade. Three years later, some city ordinances marked the first government recognition, and legislation soon followed in a number of states.”

Check out the on-line story for more.

Bottom line: If you are lucky enough to have a well-paying job today, pat yourself on your back. According to another newspaper report, only 1 in 4 working Americans think they are doing okay when it comes to their financial well-being.

I hope you are one of them.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Turns out year-to-date index returns were all up at the close of last week. But, 1-year returns all lost ground.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for the four major indices—DJIA, S&P 500, NASDAQ and the Russell 2000— including the dates each reached new highs. Data if according to CNBC.com and based on prices at the close of business on Friday, Aug.31, 2018.

DJIA 5.04% YTD up from previous week’s return of 4.33%.

  • 1 yr Rtn 18.30% down a hair from the previous week 18.39 %

Most recent DJIA all-time high was reached on January 26, 2018 of 26,616.71.  The previous high was reached January 18, 2018 was 26,153.42.

 

-S&P 500 8.52% YTD up a jump from last week’s 7.52%

  • 1 yr Rtn 17.39% down from last week’s 17.86%

The S&P 500 reached a BRAND NEW CLOSING ALL-TIME HIGH on August 29, 2018 of 2,916.50. The previous closing high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 2,876.16.

 

-NASDAQ 17.47% YTD way up from last week’s 15.10%

  • 1yr Rtn 26.15% down from last week’s 26.70%

Nasdaq reached a BRAND NEW 52-week CLOSING HIGH on August 30, 2018 of 8,1333.30. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 7,949.71.

 

-Russell 2000 13.37% YTD a jump up from last week’s 12.38%

  • 1yr Rtn 23.87% down from last week’s 25.61%

The Russell 2000 reached a BRAND NEW 52-week ALL-TIME HIGH on August 31, 2018 of 1,742.09. The previous high was reached on August 24, 2018 of 1,726.97.

 

-Mutual funds

Another big jump up for the average equity fund.

At the close of business on Thursday, August 30,2018, the average total return for funds that fall under the U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading was 9.12 %. That’s up considerably from the previous week’s figure of 7.87%, according to Lipper.

And, it continues to be a small-cap world: Small-Cap Growth Funds lead the performance way—returning on average 21.86%.

On the other hand, under that same broad heading the biggest loser was Dedicated Short Bias Funds, -11.96%

Looking around the world, returns aren’t so hot either as the average World Equity Fund had a return of -2.04%.

Visit www.allaboutfunds.com for more information about how various equity and fixed-income funds have rewarded investors over the short-and long-term, based upon Lipper data. Short-term meaning weekly and monthly performance returns; longer-term includes quarterly, year-to-date, 1-yr, 2-yr, 3-yr and 5-yr returns.

 

  • September Markets

While the skies may be ever-so slightly changing from that beautiful robin’s egg blue color to a deeper hue of blue in September, history shows that stock prices change too.

The DJIA averages a decline of 0.7% and the S&P 500 down 0.5% during the ninth month of the calendar year, according to “Stock Traders Almanac”.

You’ve been told.

-30-