Are Interest Rates Heading Lower?
As the financial markets sort through the banking sector's issues, speculators have adjusted their outlook for interest rates for 2023 and beyond.In the first table, you can see that on March 3, speculators were expecting the Federal...Read More
FDIC Insurance, SVB & Signature Bank
When events like Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) and Signature Bank happen, it's natural to wonder how a bank safeguards your funds. Fortunately, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insurance was designed for this very reason:...Read More
Don't Watch The Markets Too Closely
One of my favorite Warren Buffett quotes is, “Remember that the stock market is a manic depressive.”What he’s suggesting is that stock prices can sometimes swing wildly from day to day in response to even minor news....Read More
Recession Fears Fading?
Investors put the economy on recession watch when the Fed started its “higher in a hurry” push with short-term interest rates in mid-2022.After the 10-year/2-year Treasury curve inverted in July 2022, it was “all...Read More
European Stocks At All-Time Highs
Would it surprise you that the U.K. stock market is hitting new all-time highs and several other European markets are either at new highs or approaching new all-time highs?It seems like only a few months ago, European economies...Read More
Is the Bear Market Over?
"Is the bear market over?"That's a question I've been asked a number of times in recent weeks. And my answer is the same, "Let's give it a little time."But people are quick to remind me that stocks are off to a good start in 2023,...Read More
Inflation Is Trending Lower. Now What?
The December inflation report had some encouraging news. It showed that consumer prices trended lower for the month, but more importantly, it confirmed that overall prices have been trending lower for the past six months.Now the ball...Read More
SECURE Act 2.0: An Overview
In the final days of 2022, Congress passed a new set of retirement rules designed to make it easier to contribute to retirement plans and access those funds earmarked for retirement.The law is called SECURE 2.0, and it's a follow-up to...Read More
SECURE Act 2.0 Passed in Final Days of 2022
Congress spent the final days of 2022 on new reforms designed to help Americans save more for retirement.You may hear the changes called SECURE Act 2.0, which is a follow-up to the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement...Read More
Outlook 2023: What's Next for Interest Rates?
What does the bond market know that the Fed isn’t telling us?Fed officials recently have said that short-term rates will need to climb to over 5 percent to bring inflation under control. But in the table below, you can see that...Read More
Discussing Finances Over the Holidays
The holiday season is upon us; from story time with sorely missed grandchildren to laughter with friends and family over long-cherished memories, there's little doubt that "the most wonderful time of the year" has arrived.For my family...Read More
Is the Fed Ready to Pause?
Over the years, the Fed has followed a similar pattern with interest rates. It raises interest rates, then pauses, so it can see how the economy is adjusting to the higher rates. The chart below shows the Fed’s pattern with...Read More
October CPI: Game Changer or Head Fake?
October's Consumer Price Index (CPI) had some encouraging news for investors, but others asked, "Is this a game changer or another head fake?"While it's a bit early to know the answer, it was great to see that inflation rose at a...Read More
When the Fed Chair Talks, People Listen
The financial markets are on edge this year each time Fed Chair Jerome Powell takes the podium following a Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting.The chart below shows that the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index has gained...Read More
Warren Buffett on Contrarian Investing
You may have heard the phrase “contrarian investing,” but did you know that one of the most reliable contrary indicators is individual investors?Retail investors often do the wrong thing at the wrong time. But this year,...Read More
How the Fed Has Navigated World Events
I’ve always been a little cautious when people say, “it’s different this time.” But the table below suggests the Fed is approaching 2022’s inflation differently than other financial events in recent...Read More
The Biggest COLA Increase Since 1981
How well do you remember 1981? Harrison Ford had his first bow as Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark. Frogger and Donkey Kong were all the rage at video arcades. Bob Ross left the Air Force and took up painting. On top of that,...Read More
Have a Hopeful Halloween
Lately, "inflation" seems to be the media's favorite word. Everywhere you turn, there's another story about the impact of inflation. For example, many news outlets have reported that confectionary prices have surged over 30% from last...Read More
What’s the Fed’s Master Plan?
Wall Street is always searching for a hero to embrace or a villain to blame. And right now, Fed Chair Jerome Powell is the villain.After the September Fed meeting, Powell said interest rates may be heading higher for longer than...Read More
What is Happening with CPI and Inflation?
Believe me, everyone on Wall Street wants inflation to go away, or at least shrink back to below 2%, a level we enjoyed not so long ago.But Tuesday's Consumer Price Index report showed it might be some time before we see 2% again....Read More
These Months are More Volatile Than Others
We’re entering a tricky time of year: September and October have a reputation for bringing an extra measure of market volatility.Some of the stock market’s most challenging events have hit in September and October, and...Read More
Important Details on Student Loan Relief
The White House recently forgave up to $10,000 to student loan borrowers as part of a larger debt forgiveness program. There are still quite a few questions to be answered, but here are some key points to know.Pell vs. non-Pell: Loan...Read More
Recession or Growth Scare? Your Guide
I’m hearing a lot of mixed messages these days about the economy. Some headlines say we’re already in a recession; some say one is looming. Others hint that we’ll avoid a recession and have a soft landing. It makes...Read More
Three Ways the Inflation Act Could Impact You
Have you heard? The Inflation Reduction Act was signed into law on Tuesday, August 16. While the $430 billion package includes many provisions, I thought I’d highlight three key areas where you may benefit the most.Tax credits...Read More
The Fed's Inflation Nowcasting Tool
Does waiting 30 days for a government report seem a bit unreasonable? After all, we live in a world of instant messages and real-time quotes. Why should we wait a whole month between updates on the Consumer Price Index to see what's...Read More
Unpacking the Summer Economy
In the financial world, some weeks are more important than others, and we just lived through a big one. Let's unpack each of the four key stats:The Fed. As expected, the Fed bumped up short-term rates again at its July meeting. But the...Read More
1.02 Billion Reasons to Be Prepared
What would you do with a windfall? It’s a question I’ve read or heard a lot lately. Considering the Mega Millions jackpot has now grown to $1.02 billion, it’s safe to say most of us have thought about what it would be...Read More
Balmy Business Books for a Sweltering Summer
There’s nothing quite like the pleasure of a good book. And with temperatures rising nearly everywhere, now is a great time to grab a frosty beverage, settle into your comfiest chair, and lose yourself in a good story.Here's what...Read More
3 Tips for the Second Half of 2022
With half the year behind us, now is a great time to consider what the remainder of 2022 may hold. However, with inflation and economic uncertainty causing many of us to delay or cancel vacations, large purchases, and more, it can be...Read More
How to Keep Your Identity Safe
In case you didn’t know, June is National Internet Safety Month. With nearly 4 billion people on social media worldwide, plus the risks of using online brokerage and bank accounts, the need for digital security has never been...Read More
When bears are loud, consider this
Some gloomy headlines are coming out of Wall Street lately. Have you noticed?In recent days, I’ve read things like “Brace yourself for economic hurricanes” and “Wall Street investor survey paints a dire outlook...Read More
Care for a COLA with Your Social Security?
As you might have heard, people are talking about a big bump in Social Security benefits next year.The Senior Citizens League says payments could rise by as much as 8.6 percent in 2023, compared to an increase of 5.9 percent in 2022....Read More
When Will the Stock Market Hit Bottom?
The number one question I’m hearing this week is, “When are we going to see the stock market reach a low point?” In spite of recent volatility, my answer remains the same: rather than timing the markets, focus on time...Read More
How to Buy I Bonds Direct from the Treasury
With inflation hovering near 40-year highs, some investors are looking for alternative ways to weather the storm. For many, a Series I Savings Bond is just the ticket. I Bonds give investors a rate of return plus inflation protection...Read More
Age My Way in May
May is a month to celebrate the older Americans in our country and honor their lives and the accomplishments they still have ahead of them.Older Americans Month was established in 1963 by President John F. Kennedy to bring awareness to...Read More
The Risks of Cryptocurrency
Like many Americans, you probably saw at least a few Super Bowl advertisements for the cryptocurrency industry last weekend. And if you’ve been paying attention to the news, there’s no question you’ve heard of someone...Read More
Weekly Market Insights: Powell Favors Quick Movement
April Is Financial Literacy Month
Over the last year, many have seen their lives impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The ways in which we work, live, and communicate have drastically changed, to say the least...Read More