How Much Has the Chinese Economy Grown?

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According to The South China Morning Post, the Chinese economy grew at 6.2% in the second quarter of 2019 on a year over year basis. That was the lowest growth…

What’s Happened to U.S. Trade?

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According to the Commerce Department, U.S. manufacturers have moved some of their supply chains away from China in 2019, increasing imports from Taiwan that are up 22%, and India, which…

How Do We Measure Inflation?

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The government measures inflation in eight major categories, and then weights them to produce an overall CPI index, or consumer price index.  The consumer price index is a measure of…

Are Home Prices Really Rising?

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According to the National Association of Realtors, the median sales price of existing homes sold in the United States, in June of 2019, was $285,700, which was a record price.…

Who Are Our Foreign Investors?

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According to the Treasury Department, foreign investors held $6.55 trillion of US Treasuries at the end of May of 2019, which is the highest level ever. Japan replace China as…

Can There Be Growth Despite a Lowered Debt Rating?

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It was approximately eight years ago, on August 5th, 2011, when I was in Chicago's O'Hare Airport when it was announced, that the Standard & Poor's had downgraded the US…

What is a Currency Manipulator?

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On Monday, August 5th, the U.S. Treasury Department labeled China as a "currency manipulator" according to the Treasury Department. And this was the first time that the U.S. has made…

What Does the Fed’s Cut Mean?

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On July 31st of this year, the Federal Reserve cut their interest rate known as the Fed funds rate, by a quarter of a percent. This is the first cut…

What Does the Growth of the US Economy Mean for Americans?

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According to the Commerce Department, as of March 31st of 2019 the overall US economy was $21 trillion in size. Fifty years ago, in 1969 the overall US economy was at…

Does the Stock Market Care Who Is In the White House?

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According to BTN Research, In the last 50 years, the S&P 500 has been up 17.5% per year under a Democratic president and a Republican led Congress. Under a Republican…

The Ups and Downs of Bonds

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So far this year we have seen the interest rates on bonds drop substantially and according to BTN research, the bond market through the end of July is up 6.3%…

What Does the 2019 Budget Look Like So Far?

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According to the Treasury Department, the U.S. government has incurred an $867 billion deficit through its 10 months of fiscal of 2019, which ended July 31. During that time period,…

Do Bonds Perform Differently Over the Long Term?

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According to BTN research, the stock market has produced a total return of 14.7% over the last 10 years through June of 2019.  The worst quarter over the last decade…

Breaking Ground = Breaking Records

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As we're coming to the late stages of the economic cycle, one of the indicators that I look at is new home construction. According to the census bureau, in 2018…

Are You Prepared for the Future?

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According to caring.com, 58% of Americans have not executed a will or other estate planning documents. Today I would like to go through what makes up a basic will in…

Where Does the Government’s Money go?

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According to the Congressional Budget Office, the projected spending outlays for the U.S. government over the next 10 fiscal years is projected to be $57.8 trillion. That $57.8 trillion is…

I’m Living Longer – Isn’t That A Good Thing?

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Due to medical advances, people are living longer and longer.  According to Social Security Administration, a 65-year-old couple today has a 48% chance that at least one of them will…

What is the Real Rate of Return and why should you care?

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Today I would like to share a concept with you called Real Rate of Return I think it is important to know what your overall return on your portfolio is,…

What Occupations Are Needed in the Future?

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This is the time of year when college kids graduate, and high school students start to enter the college.  I know with my kids we have had many discussions about…

Where Should I Invest My Money?

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Often, I'm asked what the best investment is and where should I be investing my money right now.  Obviously, it's difficult to know, but normally we look at overall allocations…

Is College Graduation Still a Day of Celebration?

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Student loan debt continues to become more and more talked about in the media, and I found an article from JPMorgan Chase that indicated that student loan debt reached a…

Record Repurchases for 2018

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I've talked in the past about companies buying their stock back, but today, I want would like to go into a little more in detail about this because we saw…

When Should I Start Investing?

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My middle daughter will be graduating college in the next couple of weeks, and she has continued to hear me talk about the importance of how starting early in contributing…

Can A Few Days Really Make A Difference?

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What's happening in the market? As we're entering into the longest bull market in stock market history, it can be tempting to pull your investments out of the market and…

How Has College Tuition Changed?

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Today's video is going to hit home personally for me as I have one child that is graduating from college, and I have another one that is just starting college.…

How Do Rising Interest Rates Affect Bond Rates?

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Why Does the Fed Change Interest Rates? The Federal Reserve raises and lowers interest rates to try to keep the economy growing at a steady pace. As the economy weakens,…

The Congressional Budget Office says WHAT?

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I've seen a lot of reports from the Congressional Budget Office and most recently their 10-year projection for our government's annual budgets. What does the CBO project? In January of…

What Will Happen With Interest Rates?

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One of the bellwether Indexes in the bond market is the 10-year Treasury note. What is happening with the 10-year Treasury? According to Investopedia, a 10-year Treasury note is a…

What’s So Special About Our Country’s Economic Expansion?

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When will the next recession be? Economists cannot say with precision when the next U.S. recession will take place, but many of the economists feel the economy is still strong…

Social Security Expenditures

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In the beginning.... According to the Social Security administration, when President Franklin D. Roosevelt proposed the Social Security Retirement Program back in 1935, the financial analyst in the White House…

How Has Technology Affected the Workforce?

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How Has Technology Affected the Workforce? According to the Department of Labor, after adjusting for inflation, manufacturing output in the United States is up 62% over the last 30 years…

When Should I Start Saving?

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What is the average age to start saving? According to Nationwide Retirement Institute, a November 2018 survey of 1,161 employed adults determined that the average age which this group began…

Is It Time For A Recession?

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The most common question I'm asked by clients is: Are we heading into a recession, or when do you think the recession will start? Certainly, nobody knows the answer to…

How Long Do You Have to Invest?

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Why is my investment time horizon important? As I indicated before, 2018 was a challenging year for the majority of asset classes. But I want to reiterate the importance of…

How Will the 2019 Government Budget Be Spent?

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According to the published On Balance newsletter, the proposed budget for fiscal 2019 is $4.4T.  The government estimates that it will receive approximately $3.4T creating almost a $1T deficit. Where…

What is the impact of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act?

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What did the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 do? The recent Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that was signed into law in December of 2017 included a one-time…

Why is the S&P 500 important?

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What is the S&P 500? When we refer to the S&P 500, the S&P 500 is a market value weighted index with each stock weighed in the index proportionate to…

How Has the Debt Grown?

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What was the budget deficit for 2018? According to the Treasury Department, the budget deficit for the United States in its fiscal 2018 year, which ended on September 30th of…

What is a Bear Market?

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In the fourth quarter of last year, from the peak of the market in September to the bottom of the market on December 24th, the overall stock market according to…

Asset Class Returns

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In my 30-year career, one of the things that we continue to convey to clients is diversification. Why is diversification important? Normally having money in different asset classes tends to…

How Much is a Trillion?

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Over the years, we have become accustomed to hearing everything about billions.  Billions of people, billions in market cap, billions in sales but it appears now everything seems to be…

How Much Will College Really Cost?

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Today's video is going to hit home personally as my youngest son is a senior in high school, and we are now starting to evaluate the differences in tuition from…

What’s Happening to the Average Household Income?

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Household Income Hits A New High As the economy has continued to grow during this economic cycle, it appears that household income has been going up too. According to the…

How Much Do I Need to Retire Comfortably?

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In all of my years as an investment advisor, the question I am asked the most is: How much money do I need to have to retire comfortably? Certainly, this…

Shifting Responsibility in Pension Plans

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Over the years we've seen a significant change in pension plans and today I wanted to talk to you about the defined benefit plan versus the defined contribution plans and…

The Case for Diversification

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What does it mean to diversify? I think an important concept that we've all heard over the years, but I think is often underutilized, is the case for diversification. When…

The Status of our Government’s Debt

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The government debt continues to grow, as does the interest cost. Welcome to Friday's financial fitness. I know that I have talked before a lot about our governments overall debt. But today…

Increase in Social Security

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Big Swings in the Market

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S&P Share Repurchases

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Market Perspective

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Status of Unemployment

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State of the Economy

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Causes of our Government’s Debt

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Strength of the Homeowner

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Homeowner and Renter Trends

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Time in the Market

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Historical Growth of our Economy

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Market Cap Weighting of the S&P 500

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Historic Market Capitalization

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The Facts About Tariffs

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Yield Curve

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Long-term Govt Bond Downturns and Recoveries

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Revisiting Interest Rate Risk

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Can Presidents Move Markets?

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College Costs

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Rising Cost to the Employer

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The Fed Funds rate vs. Treasury Rate

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Timing the Market

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US Versus Eurozone Unemployment

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Financial Health of Banks

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The Risk in Treasury Securities

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Stock Market Volatility

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Understanding Price Earnings Ratio

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EPS Effect of Stock Buyback

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Stock Buybacks Hit Record High

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Unusual Low Unemployment

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Breaking Down the CPI Index

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Can Falling Birth Rates Predict a Recession?

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Debt in Retirement

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Sizing Up Our Trading Balance

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Status of Unemployment

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Infrastructure Bill

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Stock Market Valuation

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Top Income Earners

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The Changing Retirement Plan Market

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The Effect of a Growing GDP

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Long-Term Averages

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Status of Our National Debt

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Missing the Best Days of the Stock Market

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Status of Mortgage Rates

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Breaking Down Our Government’s Budget

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Summary of the Tax Reform Bill

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The Best and Worst Performers of 2017

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Market Update for February 2018

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2017 Review of the Markets

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2017 Year-End Review

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Rising Cost of Benefits

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Credit Ratings

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Market Cap Perspective

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