The Week on Wall Street Traders assumed that the week's biggest news event would be Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's speech at the annual Jackson Hole banking conference. Instead, China seized the headlines by announcing new tariffs on U.S. goods. Domestic stocks ended up lower for the week. The Nasdaq Composite fell 1.83%; the S&P 500, 1.44%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 0.99%. International stocks posted a weekly gain: the MSCI EAFE benchmark rose 0.96%. Beijing Plans New Tariffs Friday morning, China's finance ministry stated it would levy import taxes of 5-10% on an additional $75 billion of American Read More
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A growing family, by definition, means growing financial obligations – both in the present and in the future. Raising children can increase your insurance needs and heightens the urgency for being properly prepared. Auto. When a child becomes a new driver, one option is to add the teenager to the parents' policy. You may want to discuss with your auto insurer ways to reduce the additional premium that accompanies a new driver.[i] Home. You should periodically review your homeowners policy for three primary reasons. A growing family generally accumulates increasing amounts of personal belongings. Think of each child's toys, Read More
The Week on Wall Street U.S. stock indices saw significant ups and downs last week, with traders looking for economic cues from Treasury yields and also developments in the tariff fight between the U.S. and China. The S&P 500 lost 1.03% on the week; the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite respectively declined 1.53% and 0.79%. Overseas shares also retreated: the MSCI EAFE index lost 2.34%. Attention on the Bond Market Wednesday, the yield of the 2-year Treasury bond briefly exceeded that of the 10-year Treasury bond. When this circumstance occurs, it signals that institutional investors are less Read More
For investors who are looking to diversify their portfolio with exposure to companies located outside the U.S., there exist two basic choices: a global mutual fund or an international mutual fund. By definition, international funds invest in non-U.S. markets, while global funds may invest in U.S. stocks alongside non-U.S. stocks. Keep in mind that diversification is an approach to help manage investment risk. It does not eliminate the risk of loss if security prices decline. Also, international investments carry additional risks, which include differences in financial reporting standards, currency exchange rates, political risks unique to a specific country, foreign Read More
The Week on Wall Street Stocks spent much of last week rebounding from a Monday drop that reflected nervousness about the U.S.-China trade fight. By Thursday's closing bell, the S&P 500 had regained all its Monday losses - but it descended again on Friday. The three big U.S. equity benchmarks finished the week lower: the S&P declined 0.46%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 0.75%; the Nasdaq Composite, 0.56%. A broad index of foreign shares, the MSCI EAFE, lost 0.95%. China Devalues Its Currency Last Monday, stocks fell 3% in reaction to the overnight weakening of the Chinese yuan. A Read More
The baby boomers redefined everything they touched, from music to marriage to parenting and even what “old” means – 60 is the new 50! Longer, healthier living, however, can put greater stress on the sustainability of retirement assets. There is no easy answer to this challenge, but let’s begin by discussing one idea – a bucket approach to building your retirement income plan. The Bucket Strategy can take two forms. The Expenses Bucket Strategy: With this approach, you segment your retirement expenses into three buckets: *Basic Living Expenses – food, rent, utilities, etc. *Discretionary Expenses – vacations, dining out, Read More
The Week on Wall Street Last week, the Federal Reserve cut interest rates for the first time in more than a decade, in line with Wall Street's expectations. Ironically, stocks had their worst week of 2019. The S&P 500 finished the week 3.10% lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite also posted weekly losses; the blue chips fell 2.60%, while the premier tech benchmark slumped 3.92%. International stocks tracked by MSCI's EAFE index dipped 1.06%. Fed Cuts Benchmark Interest Rate On Wednesday, the central bank reduced the federal funds rate by 0.25%. The latest Fed policy Read More
Addressing the potential threat of long-term care expenses may be one of the biggest financial challenges for individuals who are developing a retirement strategy. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates that 69% of people over age 65 can expect to need extended care services at some point in their lives. So, understanding the various types of long-term care services – and what those services may cost – is critical as you consider your retirement approach.[i] What Is Long-Term Care? Long-term care is not a single activity. It refers to a variety of medical and non-medical services Read More
The Week on Wall Street Last week, investors assessed earnings and the initial estimate of second-quarter economic growth, while awaiting the Federal Reserve's next announcement about interest rates. Stocks rose for the week; particularly, tech shares. The S&P 500 gained 1.65%; the Nasdaq Composite, 2.26%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lagged, adding just 0.14%. MSCI's EAFE index, a gauge of equity performance in developed foreign markets, ticked up 0.01%. Economy Grew Moderately in Q2 Analysts surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast 2.0% Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the second quarter. The actual estimate, announced Friday by the Bureau Read More
The Week on Wall Street Stock benchmarks retreated during the first week of the second-quarter earnings season. As some big names shared quarterly results, investors seemed more interested in what might happen at the Federal Reserve's upcoming policy meeting. For the week, the S&P 500 declined 1.23%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.65%, and the Nasdaq Composite, 1.18%. International stocks, measured by the week-over-week performance of the MSCI EAFE index, were down 0.79%. Households Bought More Last Month Retail sales were up 0.4% in June, according to the Department of Commerce. Consumer purchases account for more than two-thirds Read More