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  • Is It Over Yet?
    Plus October Market Report

    John Gorlow | Nov 17, 2020

    Long-predicted volatility showed up like a sudden, fast-moving storm in the final week of October. Election jitters, Congressional failure to deliver a Covid-relief package, new lockdowns in Europe, and a rapid rise in US Covid cases gave investors all the reasons they needed to dump stocks. The carnage was severe, with the S&P shedding 5.6%, the Dow dumping 6.5%, and the tech-driven Nasdaq losing 2.4% in just one week. For the month, all three indexes lost 2% or more. 

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  • Reality Check
    Plus Q3 Market Report

    John Gorlow | Oct 14, 2020

    Investors could be forgiven for feeling disconnected from reality at the end of Q3 2020. Among many disrupted patterns and expectations, we’ve witnessed a skyrocketing stock market amidst deepening global economic pain and human suffering. Yes, there are always opportunities hidden within calamities. But who could have predicted the astounding gains of the last two quarters?

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  • Stock Gains and Social Pain
    Plus May Market Summary

    John Gorlow | Jun 16, 2020

    Despite more than 108,000 US deaths from Covid-19 and deep job losses caused by the economic shutdown to prevent even more fatalities, US stock prices are hovering within 8% of their all-time peaks reached earlier this year. How does this square with the bleak news of the past month? We share our thoughts on a turbulent period of social unrest and economic uncertainty following a brief market summary.

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  • Living with Uncertainty

    John Gorlow | May 08, 2020

    April was a temperamental month filled with swings in investor mood and sentiment. And despite a blockbuster performance by stocks, it was a month filled with anxiety. How can we go about our day-to-day lives while bracing ourselves for further volatility? We offer our perspective here.

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  • Zero-Fees Trading: Too Good to be True?
    Plus Third Quarter 2019 Market Report

    John Gorlow | Oct 13, 2019

    The S&P 500 delivered a modest increase in the third quarter, helping stocks hold on to their biggest year-to-date gains in more than two decades. The simultaneous rise in safe assets like Treasuries reflects the fact that the most prominent economic narratives today are not optimistic. If you add the bleak surveys of business confidence worldwide, you may decide it’s time to batten down the hatches in preparation for a downturn. But you can't predict the future, and neither can anyone else. Meanwhile, in the battle to capture customers, Charles Schwab shook the brokerage industry last week when it said it will cut commissions to zero. Schwab’s move has since been matched by TD Ameritrade, Fidelity and others. We’ll look at benefits and potential concerns of this latest step after a review of Q3 market results.

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  • August Market Report

    John Gorlow | Sep 10, 2019

    It was a volatile month for stocks. Fears about escalating US-China trade tensions sent the Broad US Stock Market Index down 2.50% or more on at least three occasions in August, the most in nearly eight years. Gold prices surged as investors sought a refuge from the selling. The yield on the two-year Treasury Note surpassed that of the ten-year for the first time since 2007. The S&P 500 Index still returned 18.34% YTD, and within a couple percent of July’s record close. 

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  • Emerging Markets: Hold or Fold?
    Plus July Market Report

    John Gorlow | Aug 16, 2019

    When will Emerging Markets come back to life? Ten years is a long time for buy-and-hold investors to be patient, especially when comparing the subpar returns of Emerging Markets to the stratospheric gains of the S&P 500 Index over the same decade. The data tell a nuanced global story, punctuated by politics, protectionism, nationalism, trade wars, climate change, and unexpected winners and losers. In our view, the story is far from over. We’ll share our perspective and advice after a look at the July markets.

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  • Opportunity Funds: Too Good to be True?
    Plus Mid-Year 2019 Market Report

    John Gorlow | Jul 17, 2019

    You may have heard about “opportunity zones,” real estate hot spots that are attracting developers, fund managers and investors. Got $1,000,000 in capital gains? You could roll those capital gains into a “Qualified Opportunity Fund (QOF)” to defer or reduce current tax obligations and eliminate future capital gains! One catch: your money has to be tied up for ten years to reap the full benefits. Also, there’s no guarantee that your $1,000,000 investment will make a dime. We’ll look at the benefits and potential perils of this latest real estate investment craze after a review of Q2 market results. 

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  • Chasing Yield in a Shady Market
    Plus May Market Report

    John Gorlow | Jun 11, 2019

    “Ticking time bomb.” “Marginal, non-creditworthy borrowers.” “Vulnerable to runs.” “Huge deterioration in standards.” You may have been reading the press about Collateralized Loan Obligations (CLOs) over the past few months or year. They are not a new product, but warnings about their risks are on the rise. Are you tempted to invest in these high-yield securities? If so, learn more before jumping in. Our analysis follows a review of May markets.

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  • Average Expectations
    Plus April Market Report

    John Gorlow | May 20, 2019

    Tongues were wagging when the Golden State Warriors’ Steph Curry entered Game 6 of the second-round playoffs against the Houston Rockets. Was the star losing his touch? Lately his shooting had been abysmal, despite averaging 27.3 points per game throughout the 2018 – 2019 regular season and 23.5 points over a ten-year career. Even so, fans were shocked when Curry failed to land a single shot in the first half of the game. Then came an astounding second half, when he lit up like a rocket (pardon the pun) to score 33 points, 23 of them in the fourth quarter alone. Herein lies a lesson in trusting the long-term average and ignoring day-to-day fluctuations. It’s good advice for investing, too. Read more after a review of April markets.   

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