18 Jan 2022

Interest Rates & Tech Stocks

On the last day of last year, the 10-year US Treasury closed with a yield of 1.52 percent. As noted above, it closed last week with a yield of 1.78 percent, an upward change of 0.26 percent, or in percentage terms, 17.1 percent higher. Short-term rates have not changed much so far, but the Federal Reserve has indicated that short-term rates could be at or above one percent by the… Read More

11 Jan 2022

Portfolio Insights

We are pleased to provide a digital copy of Portfolio Insights, our quarterly newsletter. Table of Contents: Stock Market Summary Bond Market Review Visualizing Inflation The Big Picture Click here to read the issue: Q4 2021 Portfolio Insights

10 Jan 2022

The Fed’s Policy Pivot: Higher Rates Ahead

The big story last week was Federal Reserve’s hawkish tone. In fact, though, the Fed’s pivot started a few weeks ago, but last week solidified it through the release of the minutes from their December meeting. There are two key factors that investors are watching: what the Fed plans to do about their bond-buying program known as quantitative easing (QE) and their plans for short-term interest rates. Regarding short-term interest… Read More

3 Jan 2022

The S&P 500 Doubled in Three Years. Now What?

I know I’ve said this before, but I’ll repeat again what Carly Simon sang in her 1971 hit Anticipation: “These are the good old days.” WE now have 96-years of high-quality market data, and a quick look at the numbers showed a few interesting things: The nominal change in the S&P 500 was in the 92nd percentile of all rolling three-year returns. Inflation annualized at 3.6 percent during that time,… Read More

20 Dec 2021

Alternatives are Tough

I wrote a lot about inflation in 2021 for pretty obvious reasons. I also wrote that bonds are difficult investments to own right now because the expected inflation rate over the coming decade is more than the current interest rates. After receiving a lot of inquiries about bond alternatives like REITs, utilities, and the like, I wrote an article shooting down those too. This article is a variant on that… Read More

6 Dec 2021

Illustrating Inflation

For years now, inflation has been an afterthought in the investing conversation because it’s been so dormant. In fact, for a few years, the worry was centered around deflation. And yet, here we are, somewhere in a pandemic (I’d like to think near the end, but omicron is a good reminder that we just don’t know what’s around the corner), and we’re talking about supply-chain bottlenecks and looking at government… Read More

29 Nov 2021

Omicron Variant Strikes Markets

Friday was yet another reminder of how quickly things can change in life and in markets. The Omicron news is concerning, so it’s natural for markets to react sharply as investors take in new information. Stock markets were down sharply on Friday with the Dow down 2.5% and the S&P 500 down 2.3%. The price of a barrel of oil also fell more than 10% on the day. It’s also… Read More

8 Nov 2021

Finally: Dow 36,000

Although I wasn’t yet in the wealth management business, I vividly recall the tech bubble in the late 1990s. I graduated from college in 1995, and remember the Investments professor saying that markets were overvalued. In my first few years on the job, I witnessed the Dow cross 5,000 and then 10,000 within just five years. I was working in foreign exchange and was going through a terrible bear market… Read More

1 Nov 2021

The Trouble with Tesla

Over the years, I’ve missed some wonderful returns on stocks that I thought were too expensive. I was an Amazon customer starting in 1999 (you can find your ENTIRE purchase history on the site), two years after they went public. I might have missed ‘the ground floor,’ but I was worried about their valuation. Tesla is another company. I know several people who bought them when they came out, and… Read More

25 Oct 2021

I Finally Bought Bitcoin

Several years ago, I went to the movies and noticed a machine selling Bitcoin in the lobby. I’d read about Bitcoin and thought about buying one just to keep an eye on it. Then, I thought that $3,500 was an expensive night at the movies and just enjoyed the show. A year later, I went back, and the price had risen to $16,500 per coin, and I realized that night… Read More