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Yearly Archives - 2018

Crashing stock markets are trying to send a message

Markets Are Sending a Message – Are You Listening?

If weakness in the stock market earlier this year didn’t wake up investors and make them realize the underlying weak fundamentals of the US economy, hopefully last week’s stock market declines did. Just as much of the stock market’s growth over the past few years has been driven by tech stocks, so has much of the decline been driven by those stocks too. And with tariffs starting to affect international trade and drive up prices for consumers, economic growth [...]

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How best to save for retirement

What’s Keeping Most People From Saving for Retirement?

The dream of every American is to retire comfortably and securely. After decades of working in an office, at a factory, or in a school or hospital, people want to be able to relax and enjoy their golden years in retirement, seeing the sights and having the experiences that they didn’t have time for while they were working. But for more and more Americans that dream is moving further and further away from reality. Why is that occurring, and [...]

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A stock market crash is around the corner

All Signs Are Pointing Towards a Crash – Are You Prepared?

Those of us who criticize the Federal Reserve’s conduct of monetary policy are often ignored and sidelined during boom times. We’re supposedly the ones who are crashing the party, harshing the market’s vibes, always predicting doom and gloom. Well, there’s a reason for that, and that’s because the Fed’s inflationary monetary policy will always end in a recession or depression. A boom that is artificially induced through creation of new money and credit will always end in a bust, [...]

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Trade relations with China are worsening

Continuing Deterioration of Relations With China Could Worsen the Coming Financial Crisis

For anyone hoping for a restoration of normal trade relations between China and the United States, last week’s Bloomberg report on Chinese government hardware hacking came as a devastating blow. If the allegations are true that Chinese spies managed covertly and surreptitiously to place microchips into servers used by Amazon, Apple, and other large American corporations, that will just provide more ammunition for the Trump administration to maintain its current position towards China or even to enact more tariffs [...]

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Dig behind the numbers to assess asset performance

Dig Behind the Numbers to Find the Best Investments

While most investors know that past performance is no predictor of future performance, they nonetheless look at past performance as a potential indicator of the future. Particularly when you’re looking at mutual funds or index funds, judging fund managers on their ability to pick the right assets for a fund can be a very important part of doing your homework. But if you’re relying just on the numbers provided in fund prospectuses you could find yourself missing out on [...]

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The Fed's accommodative monetary policy isn't over

Has the Fed Really Ended Its Accommodative Monetary Policy?

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) voted last week to raise interest rates yet again, setting a target range this time of 2.00-2.25%. While that was expected by everyone and had been priced in already by markets, what took some people by surprise was the fact that the FOMC’s statement for the first time in years omitted the statement that the “stance of monetary policy remains accommodative.” That had many observers claiming that this latest interest rate bump marked [...]

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Insider stock selling

Insider Stock Selling Increasing as Buybacks Reach Record Highs

According to the latest estimates, stock buybacks will have reached an all-time high of $1 trillion this year. That’s a 46% increase from last year, and far higher than the previous high reached in, you guessed it, 2007. And that estimate could even be conservative, given that we’re still only three quarters into the year and stock prices have in recent weeks climbed back to record highs. Those high stock prices have spurred corporate insiders to dramatically increase their rates [...]

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Early retirement may not be for everyone

Early Retirement Is All the Rage, But Is It the Right Choice for Everyone?

Read any financial news site today and it will be full of accounts of people who worked hard to retire early. Whereas most Americans hope to retire around 65 and think of retiring at 50 as retiring early, some of these accounts feature people who have retired as early as 35. It’s pretty impressive to think that people have the ability to do that, and it can leave those of us still in the workplace feeling just a little [...]

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A Strong Stock Market Doesn’t Mean a Strong Economy

For decades stock markets have been viewed as proxies for the strength of the economy. The higher stock market indexes go, the stronger the economy is deemed to be. The most famous index, of course, is the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which in recent days has pushed back to record new highs. But while many people, President Trump included, view a strong stock market as an indicator of a strong economy, that isn’t really the case. In fact, that hasn’t [...]

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The American Dream Is Becoming Less and Less Attainable for More and More Americans

We’re all familiar with the concept of the American Dream, the idea of having a small family, a house, a car, and leading an idyllic lifestyle. But for more and more Americans that dream is becoming further and further away from reality. With a rising cost of living, more expensive housing, food, and education, it seems that each generation is less and less well off than generations before. More Americans than ever believe that the American Dream is unattainable, [...]

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