All posts by dianvujovich

POCKETBOOK: Week ending April 14, 2018

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  • Golden

Good news this week for gold investors. On Wednesday, gold futures traded at an intraday high of $1,369.30 an ounce, according to Gary Wagner’s Kitco Commentary on Friday, April 13, 2018.

The June Comex contract wasn’t quite that high at the close of business on Friday ($1,348.60), but even so, for the week gold had enjoyed an $11 an ounce  gain.

That’s a big deal because this precious metal has had a hard time making any kind of sustainable gains over the past few years. And, in a jumpy market like we’ve all been a part of, one might consider that a bit of an oddity.

That said, the big takeaway here is that you’ve got to go back to August 2016 to find gold trading at that high a level. “More importantly,” writes Wagner, “ the highs achieved during that rally were the first occurrence of a higher high since the multiyear correction (that) began in the middle of 2011.”

Perhaps it’s time to reconsider the value of this precious metal for ones investment portfolio other than see its worth only in golden bangles, earrings or as a cap to top off one of your back molars.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

A better performance week for stock index results than the week before with the downs not as down and the ups more up.

Look at the 1-year returns and one might even begin to wonder what all the bears on Wall Street are concerned about. Then again, the only time that 1-year returns that seem to matter to the average investor is when the end of the year 52-week results are in.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for four major indices— including the dates each reached new highs—according to CNBC.com based on prices at the close of business on Friday, April 13, 2018.

 

DJIA -1.45% YTD down but less than the previous week’s -3.18%

  • 1 yr Rtn 19.10% up from the previous week’s 15.82%

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 -0.65% YTD down much less than last week’s -2.59%

  • 1 yr Rtn 14.06% up from last week’s 10.48%

The S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on January 26, 2018 of 2,872.87. The previous high was reached on January 19, 2018 of 2810.33.

 

-NASDAQ 2.94% YTD way up from last week’s 0.17%

  • 1yr Rtn 22.42% way up from last week’s 17.62%

Nasdaq reached a brand new all-time high on March 13, 2018 of 7,637.27. The previous high was reached on March 9, 2018 of 7,560.81.

 

-Russell 2000 0.91% YTD up from than last week’s -1.45%

  • 1yr Rtn 15.18% way up from last week’s 10.91%

The Russell 2000 reached an all-time high on January 24, of 1,615.52. The previous high was reached on January 16, 2018 of 1,604.02.

 

-Mutual funds

Lipper’s weekly mutual fund performance figures not available yet. Will post them when received.

Till then, here’s a repeat look at last week’s report: At the close of business on Thursday, April 4, 2018 the average fund that falls under the broad U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading had a year-to-date return of +0.32%. That’s up—yes up—from the previous week’s average of -0.37%.

Large-Cap and Small-Cap Growth funds were up on average well over 3% last week. Science & Technology Funds and Global Science & Technology Funds both up at 4.92 and 5.08% respectively.

Latin American Funds, too, were up–averaging almost 6% y-t-d.

The biggest loser fund type of all were Energy MLP, down on average -10.02%.

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.

 

  •   Credit Risks

The ability to raise, borrow and repay money is great deal. And one individuals as well as businesses count on. But like everything else within the world of money, risks exist and timing is everything.

Last week, Jack Ablin,CFA and Chief Financial Officer at Cresset Wealth Advisors published a piece titled “Credit Conditions and Risk Taking”.

From the piece: “The easiest way to gauge real time credit conditions is by observing the yield differential between 10-year, BBB bonds and 10-year Treasury notes. Since the bond market is roughly seven times the size of the stock market, the yield premium lenders require to extend credit to lower-quality borrowers is a useful barometer.”

While currently credit conditions are “favorable”, Ablin thinks that rising credit spreads can be an early warning sign of troubles ahead.

The chart below  provides additional insight on the subject.

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Trumpbits#25: Stormy Whether

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In case you missed it on the national news, at the corner of Ranch House Road and South Congress Avenue in West Palm Beach is the Ultra Gentleman’s Club. It’s a hot spot that’s been basically a strip joint for all of the decades I’ve been living here. And as the sign tells us, is hosting the talents of one of Mr. President’s past squeezes, Stormy Daniels.

Whether or not the president will notice the bigger-than-life horny signage is anybody’s guess. But the odds seem good given the amount of time he spends at this golf club every time he is in town.

Until that report comes out, I’ve always wondered about Trump’s choice of locations for his Trump International Golf Club: A few blocks in one direction is a strip club; in another, the prison; and close enough to be annoying, the airport—a spot he has always tried to have moved because of noise. All of which sorta kinda gives new meaning to that old real estate mantra, “Location, location, location.”

As for  “Making America Horny Again”, how many guys are gonna argue with that?

 

 

POCKETBOOK: Week ending April 7, 2018

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Lots of worries over what could happen if Trump starts a trade war. This Op-Ed cartoon is from the Sunday, April 8, 2018, Palm Beach Post.
  • Trading places

Lots of talking heads have lots of things to say about the likelihood of trade wars developing should the mighty US of A decide to let President Trump rule and impose additional tariffs on goods and services from places where tariffs already are in place.

In general, many talking heads agree that there is an imbalance in our trade agreement with China. And many think that getting into a tariff war with that country could be very disruptive and costly to us, as in the average consumer.

What’s important to remember is that no new tariffs have been imposed on any country, anywhere,  yet.

It’s also important to remember that it’s really smart to remember to pick your battles.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Q: Dear Wise One:

Any perspective investors ought to keep in mind with respect to the markets’ recent volatility?

 
A: Yes.

Right now the stock market is as jumpy as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rockers. And that’s just how it is. Today.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for four major indices— including the dates each reached new highs—according to CNBC.com based on prices at the close of business on Friday, April 6, 2018.

 

DJIA -3.18% YTD down more than the previous week’s -2.49%

  • 1 yr Rtn 15.82% down from the previous week’s 16.28%

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 -2.59% YTD down more than last week’s -1.22%

  • 1 yr Rtn 10.48% down from last week’s 11.52%

The S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on January 26, 2018 of 2,872.87. The previous high was reached on January 19, 2018 of 2810.33.

 

-NASDAQ 0.17% YTD down from last week’s 2.32%

  • 1yr Rtn 17.62% down from last week’s 19.43%

Nasdaq reached a brand new all-time high on March 13, 2018 of 7,637.27. The previous high was reached on March 9, 2018 of 7,560.81.

 

-Russell 2000 -1.45% YTD down more than last week’s -0.40%

  • 1yr Rtn 10.91% up a tiny bit from last week’s 10.64%

The Russell 2000 reached an all-time high on January 24, of 1,615.52. The previous high was reached on January 16, 2018 of 1,604.02.

 

-Mutual funds

At the close of business on Thursday, April 4, 2018,  the average fund that falls under the broad U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading had a year-to-date return of +0.32%. That’s up—yes up—from the previous week’s average of -0.37%.

Large-Cap Growth and Small-Cap Growth funds were up on average well over 3% last week. Science & Technology Funds and Global Science & Technology Funds both up at 4.92 and 5.08% respectively.

Latin American Funds, too, were up—averaging almost 6% y-t-d.

The biggest loser fund type of all were Energy MLP, down on average -10.02%.

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.

 

  • ETF returns

 I heard Jack Bogle, Vanguard’s founder, point out that mutual funds have had better returns than exchange-traded funds, ETFs, a point I found worth thinking about. Seems the big push to advertise big time by various ETF brand families is one thing. But, out performing various categories of index funds however, is another.

So, while some consider the ability to buy and sell ETFs throughout the day –as one can do with both stocks and ETFs– is appealing, it isn’t necessariy financially rewarding.

One reason  is that  Bogle thinks ETFs could encourage individuals to trade their holdings more often rather than  holding their investments  for the long term. Doing so, he said makes  it difficult for an investor/trader to outperform the market.

Good point.

Then again, Bogle loves index funds.

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POCKETBOOK: Week ending March 30, 2018

  • file000242429675•April Fools

A new month. A new quarter. New Spring hopes. Maybe.

Take out any behind the scene guffaws from  White House policy makers, or economic and international surprises and the fourth month of the year could be a rewarding one for investors, if history is any guide.

Based on historical returns, ever since 1950 the S&P 500 has posted an average gain of 1.5% in April.

“From a purely seasonality point of view, April is a pretty good month…” says Ryan Detrick, senior market strategist at LPL Financial.

And guess what? There’s a 50/50 chance he’s right.

We shall see.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Remember when the indices below were reaching new all-time highs all the time? Well, believer it or not, that was happening only three months ago in January —but for some reason it seems like oh-so long ago. That’s the funny thing about keeping too close an eye on watching year-to-date returns—they’re clearly fickle. And, unless you’re a day trader, can make you crazy and doubt your overall reason for investing.

Investing for most of us, is a long-term obligation. One that comes with bouts of the unexpected on both the up- and downsides. All of which brings us to the end of the first quarter of 2018. For  many it was in a word: lousy. The S&P 500, for instance, lost 1 percent, according to CNBC.com. It was the first time that quarter has “ended in the red  since 2009”.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for four major indices— including the dates each reached new highs—according to CNBC.com based on prices at the close of business on Thursday, March 29, 2018.

 

DJIA: -2.49% YTD improved but still down from the previous week’s -4.9%

•1 yr Rtn 16.28% up from the previous week’s 13.93%

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:  -1.22% YTD improved but still down from last week’s -3.95%

  • 1 yr Rtn 11.52% up from last week’s 10.33%

The S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on January 26, 2018 of 2,872.87. The previous high was reached on January 19, 2018 of 2810.33.

 

-NASDAQ:  2.32% YTD up from last week’s 1.29%

  • 1yr Rtn 19.43% down from last week’s 20.20%

NASDAQ reached a brand new all-time high on March 13, 2018 of 7,637.27. The previous high was reached on March 9, 2018 of 7,560.81.

 

-Russell:  2000 -0.40% YTD improved from last week’s -1.66%

  • 1yr Rtn 10.64% down from last week’s 11.57%

The Russell 2000 reached an all-time high on January 24, of 1,615.52. The previous high was reached on January 16, 2018 of 1,604.02.

 

-Mutual funds

Not such a hot week. But there’s always tomorrow.

At the close of business on Thursday, March 29, 2018 the average fund that falls under the broad U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading had a year-to-date return of -0.37%. That’s down more than the previous week’s average of -0.11%.

Stepping back and taking a look at the big picture, while the average diversified fund was -0.37%, the average Sector Fund’s y-t-d return was -2.70 and the average World Equity Fund, kinda sorta almost flat at +0.11%.

Throw some fixed-income into the fold and the average Mixed Asset Fund’s y-t-d return was -0.90%; Domestic L-T Fixed Income Funds, -0.85%; and World Income Fund +0.97%.

Bottom line: Q1 of 2018 has turned out to be a stingy one for many investors. So, even though money market funds continue their puny returns, they nonetheless have provided people with positive returns. And as such, stand as a reminder that one keep some money in cash, short-term fixed-income investments and some in equities. How much and where is always your call.

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.

  • Gas up

Spring is here and along with it typically comes higher prices at the pump.

On a trip to Hutchinson Island over the weekend, the range for a gallon of regular gas that I saw ranged from about $2.69 to $2.72. That’s above the national March average of $2.56, according to AAA.

And it’s considerably higher than prices last year were when the national average price in March was $2.30. That, however, was way higher than in 2016 when it was $1.93.

But that 2.30 isn’t nearly as expensive as petrol was four years ago when, in 2014, the average price for one gallon of regular gas was—hold on to your hat—$3.51.

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Happy Easter, Passover and Spring!

 

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One of the simplest of the dozens of  Easter flower arrangements carefully made by members of the Bethesda Flower Guild at Bethesda-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Palm Beach.

From where I sit, there is nothing quite like Spring. It’s a season of hope and renewed spirit all witnessed by an impossible-to-ignore budding of Mother Nature’s incredible talents.

Nature aside, I was moved by  two display ads placed by Findlay Galleries in The Palm Beach Daily News, (a.k.a., The Shiny Sheet), this weekend. Both depict the work of great artists. Both with messages of the Season for their respective audiences. Both worth a look and a read.

On Saturday, (3/31/18), under a Marc Chagall lithograph, the ad read: “Happy Passover; May you be blessed with happiness, prosperity, peace and good health.”

Under Sunday’s Easter piece, (4/1/19), the ad read: “Happy Easter, Rejoice in the resurrection. We hope all your Easter prayers will bring you renewed hope and faith this Easter year.”

Happy Spring to all who breathe whether they practice a faith or not.

POCKETBOOK: Week ending March 24, 2018

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  • Remington’s got problems

Remington Outdoor, one of America’s oldest gun makers, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Why? Sales are off.

In business since 1816, it was a Remington rife that was used in 2012 Sandy Hook elementary school shooting. Since then, school and mass shootings haven’t stopped, fears of new gun regulations have increased all resulting in gun ownership losing a lot of its pow.

Chapter 11 doesn’t mean Remington is going bust. The move provides protection for a company and gives it time to reorganize its business and debt obligations.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Oh my…..last week’s stock prices grounded as three indices lost all of this year’s gains—one up 1.3%. Big woo!

What happened? Donald Trump’s trade war ideas.

Yale economist Robert Shiller, in an interview in Beijing on Saturday, called President Trump “ a showman” who “obviously relishes” in his celebrity, but behaves in a way that’s ”totally unbecoming for a president”, according to a CNBC.com report.

Addressing the China Development Forum, the Nobel-winner warned about the likelihood of an economic disaster if there is a trade war between the U.S. and China.

We shall see.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for four major indices— including the dates each reached new highs—according to CNBC.com based on prices at the close of business on Friday, March 23, 2018.

DJIA -4.93% YTD down seriously from the previous week’s 0.92%

  • 1 yr Rtn 13.93% down from the previous week’s 19.161%

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 -3.95% YTD down seriously from last week’s 2.93%

  • 1 yr Rtn 10.33 % down from last week’s 15.56%

The S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on January 26, 2018 of 2,872.87. The previous high was reached on January 19, 2018 of 2810.33.

 

-NASDAQ 1.29% YTD down seriously from last week’s 8.38%

  • 1yr Rtn 20.20% down from last week’s 26.80%

Nasdaq reached a brand new all-time high on March 13, 2018 of 7,637.27. The previous high was reached on March 9, 2018 of 7,560.81.

 

-Russell 2000 -1.66% YTD down a hunk from last week’s 3.29%

  • 1yr Rtn 11.57% down from last week’s 14.43%

The Russell 2000 reached an all-time high on January 24, of 1,615.52. The previous high was reached on January 16, 2018 of 1,604.02.

 

-Mutual funds

And there go this year’s gains.

At the close of business on Thursday, March 22, 2018 the average fund that falls under the broad U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading had a year-to-date return of -0.11%. That’s down from last week’s average of 2.70%.

Large-Cap Growth Funds lost about 5% and averaged 3.67%—down from the previous week’s average year-to-date return of 8.19%.

Small-Cap Growth funds provided shareholders with the week’s highest average year-to-date return of 4.32%–down from the previous week’s averge return of 6.38%.

But Science & Technology Funds were higher at 7.72%. And Global

Science/Technology Funds lead the way with average returns in each category of 8.51% —off from its previous return of over 12%, year-to-date.

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.

 

•How YOU doin?

Even with the stock market’s recent downward plunge, things aren’t as horrible as the tv talking heads might get you to believe.

For instance, Trump  supporters rave about Donald and what a great job he is doing as president, how great the economy is and how their investments have preformed.

I’m not so sure about the greatness of our economy, but, there is no arguing with the performance of the stock market: On the day that Donald J. Trump was inaugurated, January 20, 2017—which seems like 100 thousand years ago—the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 19,827.25.

While the ride since then has been bumpy and lumpy, these numbers  don’t lie.

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TrumpBits#24: Trump’s Cowardly Drive

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Clearly one of the most powerful photos taken of marchers in the March for Our Lives in Salem, Oregon. Photo by Molly J. Smith/Statesman Journal ia The USA Today Network.

President Trump’s motorcade chose another –and longer– route to take him from his WPB golf course and back to Mar-a-Lago on Saturday. That cowardly move prevented him from seeing first-hand a crowd of some 2000 individuals marching along Southern Blvd.  to protest gun violence in the aptly named March for Our Lives.

Nonetheless, photos of the event –even those seen on FOX News—will forever bear witness to the fact that hundreds of thousands of individuals across America stepped out of their homes and into the streets to join in with other like-minds who don’t agree with our nation’s current and very permissive gun laws.

For those who oppose any changes in gun regulation, I have two questions: What are you so afraid of? And, what do you think/imagine would actually happen if guns were outlawed in America?

Let me know.

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POCKETBOOK: Week ending March 17, 2018

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  • Ever hear of “crowding out”? Time to learn about it.

Trump’s tax cuts may have made million- and billionaires happy, even some workerbees may think it’s a terrific deal, but in reality the move will prove to be hugely costly to most Americans.

Why? Because somebody has to pay for those cuts.

A recent New York Times story reported that one of the results of the tax cuts is that in this fiscal year, the Treasury Department will likely  have to borrow $955 billion from investors. That’s a lot and big increase from last year.

If you’re a believer in debt, and think doing business as a big debtor is a great deal— as President Trump does, did, and has throughout this real estate business deals– a government that continues to accumulate debt isn’t an efficiently run government. Or, one anyone can or should be proud of. And is a vulnerable government.

Bottom line here is that as our debt grows so does our responsibility to pay it. Meaning, interest rates have to go up to cover those debt costs, and, it becomes more expensive for a company or an individual to borrow money translating to life costing more for everyone.

“Crowding out”, according to that same article is when “large-scale government borrowing sucks up the supply of available capital, driving up financing costs for just about everyone else.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

Once again the numbers tell their weekly story of what goes up can come down.

It was Nasdaq where the weekly numbers showed best as it moved upward while the three other indices fell.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for four major indices— including the dates each reached new highs—according to CNBC.com based on prices at the close of business on Friday, March 16, 2018.

DJIA 0.92% YTD down a hunk from the previous week’s 2.49%

  • 1 yr Rtn 19.16% down from the previous week’s 21.21%

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 2.93% YTD down a hunk from last week’s 4.22%

  • 1 yr Rtn 15.56 % down from last week’s 17.83%

The S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on January 26, 2018 of 2,872.87. The previous high was reached on January 19, 2018 of 2810.33.

 

-NASDAQ 8.38% YTD up from last week’s 5.13%

  • 1yr Rtn 26.80% down from last week’s 28.99%

Nasdaq reached a brand new all-time high on March 13, 2018 of 7,637.27. The previous high was reached on March 9, 2018 of 7,560.81.

 

-Russell 2000 3.29% YTD down from last week’s 4.01%

  • 1yr Rtn 14.43% down from last week’s 16.98%

 

The Russell 2000 reached an all-time high on January 24, of 1,615.52. The previous high was reached on January 16, 2018 of 1,604.02.

 

-Mutual funds

At the close of business on Thursday, March 15, 2018 the average fund that falls under the broad U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading had a year-to-date return of 2.70%. That’s up from the previous week’s average return of 0.57%.

Once again, Large-Cap Growth Funds lead this pack’s performance with an average year-to-date return of 8.19% —one week before that figure was 5.50%.

Behind it came Multi-Cap Growth Funds at 7.54% (the week before it was 4.49%). Then, a switch up from last week’s Mid-Cap Growth Funds, 6.18%, to Small-Cap Growth Funds at 6.38%.

Under the Sector Equity Funds heading Science & Technology Funds and Global Science/Technology Funds lead the way with average returns in each category of over 12%, year-to-date.

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.

  • CDs are looking kinda sorta good

Over the past few weeks ads in my local paper have been advertising CD rates of 2% and higher. That’s enough of a jump from the 1.10% kinds of returns to make short-term fixed income investors take notice. Particularly when the stock market is in its ninth year of a bull market and volatility is enough to cause one’s blood pressure to rise during daily and weekly market sessions.

Before biting, however, make sure to read the small print. For example, a recent ad from FCB, Florida Community Bank, offered a 2.15% APY, good through March 30,2018. To take advantage of it you’ve got to have $10,000 in “new funds” and be willing to lock those 10 Gs for 19 months.

Another ad from First Republic Bank offered a 20-month CD at the rate of 2.00%APY for a “limited time” with a minimum investment of $10,000.

Seeing yields in the 2’s is nice. But if you’re someone who thinks about annual returns, as in 12-months, make sure to read the small print in these offerings because you’d be locking up your money for at least 19 months. That’s more than a year and a half and makes the reality of these advertised 2% returns a bit of a tease.

As always, investor beware, read the small print and realize that rates could be going up before you know it.

 

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TrumpBits#23: Seeing Russia?

FullSizeRender(92)It looks as though Sarah Palin has spotted something. Could it be Russia?

What better representative for the Republican Party than Sarah Palin.  She’s the headliner at the Palm Beach County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day fundraising event on Friday.

If you wanted to attend, forgetaboutit. The receptionist at  Mar-a-Lago today told me that the event is “sold out”.

Bummer. Was hoping to learn more about Russia from this seer.

 

POCKETBOOK: Week ending March 10, 2018

  • FullSizeRender(90) •Trading places

It appears as though President Trump has a bug across his bum. One that insists America gets involved in war. Some kind of war. Any kind of war. The latest is focused on trade wars.

Most people aren’t keen on wars. They are always destructive, cost millions upon millions of dollars and impact thousands of individuals in a not-so-positive fashion. In other words, there’s basically nothing to like about a war. And none of them are ever easy to win.

So whether it be a war amongst nations or one over trade, there are always losers no matter which camp one is in. Except, of course, for the political, corporate and business profit-takers whose see their coffers bulge as a result of the woes of war.

Although most presidents rely on history to be a guide to understanding current situations, Trump, I’ve read, is said not to be much of a reader. But if he were, he might recall one time in our history when President Thomas Jefferson, through the Embargo Act, cut off all international trade with Europe. That was back in 1807. The result was, one year after those actions were taken, America’s economy collapsed and Congress repealed the act.

Will someone please tell President Trump that? America has enough economic problems to deal with without him intentionally starting a war.

 

  • Market Quick Glance

All cleaned up. Whew. That was quick.

Last week I wrote that if you had invested into an S&P 500 index fund or one that tracks the Russell 2000 you wouldn’t have made any money this year. But that was last week. This year, it’s a much different—and more profitable—story.

When the markets closed on Friday it was a clean plus-side return sweep for all the indices followed here. One index, Nasdaq, even hit a new all-time high. And the Russell 2000 gained heaps.

Below are the weekly and 1-year index performance results for four major indices— including the dates each reached new highs—according to CNBC.com based on prices at the close of business on Friday, March 9, 2018.

 

DJIA 2.49%% YTD up from the previous week’s -0.73%

  • 1 yr Rtn 21.21% up from the previous week’s 16.83%

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 4.22% YTD up from last week’s 0.66%

  • 1 yr Rtn 17.83% up from last week’s 12.99%

The S&P 500 reached its most recent all-time high on January 26, 2018 of 2,872.87. The previous high was reached on January 19, 2018 of 2810.33.

 

-NASDAQ 5.13 YTD up from last week’s 5.13%

  • 1yr Rtn 28.99% way up from last week’s 23.83%

Nasdaq stepped out reaching a brand new all-time high on March 9, 2018 of 7,560.81. The previous high of 7,505.77 was reached on January 26, 2018.

 

-Russell 2000 4.01%YTD up significantly from last week’s –0.15%

  • 1yr Rtn 16.98% up lots from last week’s 9.85%

The Russell 2000 reached an all-time high on January 24, of 1,615.52. The previous high was reached on January 16, 2018 of 1,604.02.

-Mutual funds

What a difference five trading days can make.

It didn’t take long for the year-to-date average cumulative total reinvested returns for equity funds to gain some strength. And, as of Thursday, March 8, 2018, the average fund that falls under the broad U.S. Diversified Equity Funds heading was on the plus-side of things: 0.57%. That’s up from the previous week’s average return of -0.31%, according to Lipper.

It’s Large-Cap Growth Funds that led this pack’s performance with an average year-to-date return of 5.50%.

Behind it came Multi-Cap Growth Funds at 4.49%. Then, Mid-Cap Growth Funds, 2.55%.

 

Small-Cap Value and Dedicated Short Bias Funds lost the most ground, with and average return for funds falling under those headings of -3.64% and-3.40% respectfully.

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.

 

  • Time changes

It appears that some Floridians have become fed up with the spring-ahead fall-back time changes. So, the powers that be are considering bowing out.

Trouble is, the idea might sound appealing but the reality of what would happen as a result isn’t.

Here’s one example: Floridians would have to forget becoming a part of any New Year’s Eve celebrations with the big ball dropping at 12 midnight. While the ball may be falling in New York City at that hour, it would take another hour for it to hit ground for those living in Florida.

Doubt many in Florida would go for that. Citizens in the Sunshine State are already confused enough.

 

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