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  • The Lure of Dividends
    Plus January Market Report

    John Gorlow | Feb 14, 2020
    Coronavirus

    In stark contrast to the beginning of 2019, global stocks closed out January with a 1.1% loss versus a gain of 7.9% in the same period last year. US stocks recorded their first month-over-month drop in recent months as investors were left with uncertainties surrounding the outcome of the Trump impeachment proceedings, tensions with Iran, and the Coronavirus (COVID 19) outbreak. The US Federal Open Market Committee met and left its interest rates and policy unchanged. The earnings outlook remained favorable. Gold rallied almost 4% to close at $1,593. The Bloomberg Commodity Index dropped over 7% with crude oil prices plunging over 15%. Bond prices climbed as the Ten-year US Treasury closed sharply lower at 1.51%, down from last month’s 1.92% There’s always something to rattle the markets.

    Wise investors understand that, and don’t let the news derail their investment strategy. But when bond yields sink, even disciplined investors may be tempted to jump to dividend-paying stocks as an alternative for generating cash. This month we look at the pros and cons of that approach. (Hint: there is no free lunch.) First, a look at January’s market performance.

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  • The 2010s: A Decade in Review
    Plus Fourth Quarter Market Review

    John Gorlow | Jan 21, 2020
    DecadeinReviewStocks and bonds in the US, and in many other developed markets and emerging markets, generated strong returns in 2019. Global equities were up more than 25%, and fixed income added more than 8%. For some, this performance is tinged with worry. After all, the US bull market is a decade old, and current headlines hint at all kinds of potential catastrophes ahead. Globalization backlash, Brexit uncertainty, bitterly divisive politics, rising inequality and climate change, to name a few. But don’t let worry derail your investment strategy. It’s impossible to predict the future of the markets with certainty. Who can say what this year will bring, much less the next decade? The only certainty is that the future will be filled with surprises. This month we’ll consider the lessons of the past decade, and how they might guide us now. First, a review of fourth quarter results
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