Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: December 10, 2018-Volatility Continues

December 10, 2018


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Featured Article: Volatility Continues


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Collard Greens with Bacon and Cider Vinegar


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Volatility Continues

Markets went for another wild ride last week, as major domestic indexes swung back and forth. By Friday, December 7, markets had posted their worst weekly performance since March—and the S&P 500 and Dow both moved into negative territory for 2018.

Overall, the S&P 500 lost 4.60%, the Dow declined 4.50%, and the NASDAQ dropped 4.92%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE also struggled, posting a 2.27% weekly loss.

Let’s take a look at what is driving this challenging market performance.

Examining Recent Volatility…

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Weekly Update: December 3, 2018-Markets Rebound

December 3, 2018


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Featured Article: Markets Rebound


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Brown Sugar Pecan Pie


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Markets Rebound

U.S. markets ended a volatile month on a high note Friday. All three major indices posted impressive increases for the week, buoyed by news from the Fed Reserve and international trade.

The S&P 500 jumped 4.85%, and the NASDAQ finished up 5.64%—both gains are almost 7-year highs. Meanwhile, the Dow experienced a 2-year high, increasing 5.16%. Internationally, the MSCI EAFE rose 0.95%.

To better understand last week’s sharp rebound, let’s take a closer look at details surrounding comments by Fed Chairman Jerome Powell and various international developments.

Fed Developments

Last Wednesday, Powell inspired optimism in investors by claiming that interest rates are close to the current neutral range of 2.5–3.5%. His comments seemed to suggest…

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Weekly Update: November 26, 2018-Why Did Stocks Drop?

November 26, 2018


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Featured Article: Why Did Stocks Drop?


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Five-Spice Beef Stew


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Why Did Stocks Drop?

Last week was a tough one for markets. The S&P 500 dropped 3.79% and experienced its worst results during a Thanksgiving week since 1939. While the index officially entered correction territory on Friday, it closed 10.2% below its most recent record high.

Meanwhile, the Dow and NASDAQ continued the downward trend, losing 4.44%, and 4.26%, respectively. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE also declined, posting a 1.12% loss.

Reading these results may feel quite unpleasant and elicit concerns about what is ahead. As is often the case, the story behind the numbers can help us understand the complexity and what this performance means.

Why did stocks drop?

Plummeting oil prices were one of the biggest drivers behind the market’s losses, as investors worried that too much oil is available. These concerns have contributed to oil experiencing…

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Weekly Update: November 19, 2018-Analyzing Data Amid Declines

November 20, 2018


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Featured Article: Analyzing Data Amid Declines


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: No-Bake Cranberry Cheesecake


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Analyzing Data Amid Declines

Markets experienced more volatility last week, as perspectives on trade, tech, and retail pulled investor sentiment back and forth. Although domestic indexes were up on Friday, November 16, they still posted losses for the week.

In all, the S&P 500 dropped 1.61%, the Dow declined 2.22%, and the NASDAQ gave back 2.15%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE ended the week down 1.51%.

A major topic over the past couple weeks has been the ongoing, significant declines in oil prices. Last week, we did experience one turnaround—on Friday, signs that oil production may decrease next month helped oil prices start to rebound. This pricing increase contributed to S&P 500 energy stocks rising 1.1%.

In addition to oil’s current trajectory, let’s examine some of the key October data we received last week:

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Weekly Update: November 12, 2018-The Impact of Oil and Elections

November 12, 2018


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Featured Article: The Impact of Oil and Elections


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Doubly Cheesy Meatball Bake


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


The Impact of Oil and Elections

Last week, markets experienced a 4-day winning streak before dropping on Friday, November 9. Despite those losses, domestic indexes posted gains for the week. The S&P 500 increased 2.13%, the Dow added 2.84%, and the NASDAQ was up 0.68%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE had slight growth, ending the week up 0.20%.

From interest rates to corporate profits, investors had a number of topics to consider. In this update, we want to focus on two key details that drove markets: oil prices and midterm election results.

2. Oil Prices Declined
Oil prices continued to fall last week, posting the most consecutive daily declines in at least three decades. In fact, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures, a key oil benchmark, is officially in bear market territory. WTI has fallen more than 20% below its highest point over the past year.

What does this drop mean for markets?
Some investors believe the price declines are another sign that the global economy is slowing down. Historically, people have used oil prices as one way to decipher economic health because they can correlate with global growth. When crude oil prices drop, greater economic challenges are often ahead.

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Weekly Update:November 5, 2018-Markets Bounce Back

November 5, 2018


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Featured Article: Markets Bounce Back


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Healthy Homemade Carrot Cake


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Markets Bounce Back

Markets posted strong gains last week after struggling for much of October. The S&P 500 had its best weekly performance since May, and the NASDAQ had its first positive week since September.

Despite domestic markets dropping on Friday, November 2, the S&P 500 added 2.42%, the Dow increased 2.36%, and the NASDAQ gained 2.65%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE were also up 3.34%.

What drove market performance last week?
We received a fair amount of data and reports, with the following details holding particular weight for investors:

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Weekly Update: October 29, 2018-Why Did Stocks Drop?

October 30, 2018


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Featured Article: Why Did Stocks Drop?


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Arugula and Pear Salad with Toasted Walnuts


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Why Did Stocks Drop?

Last week did nothing to dispel October’s reputation as a tough month for the markets. The S&P 500 lost 3.94%, the Dow declined 2.97%, and the NASDAQ dropped 3.78% during what was one of 2018’s most volatile weeks so far. All three indexes are down significantly for the month, and both the S&P 500 and Dow have entered negative territory for 2018. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE also struggled, posting a 3.87% drop for the week, and a 13.31% decline for the year.

Why did stocks drop? Will they continue to do so?
Currently, many topics are on investors’ minds, from inflation to tariffs to valuations and beyond, but analysts are not pointing to one single culprit for last week’s performance.

Instead, a mixture of concerns, with a large dose of emotion, seemed to drive the markets.

Emotional reactions are understandable when volatility emerges, but they have no place in long-term investment strategies. Instead, we need to focus on the fundamentals.

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Weekly Update: October 15, 2018-Stocks Take a Ride

October 15, 2018


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Featured Article: Stocks Take a Ride


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Pumpkin Bread


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Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Stocks Take a Ride

Volatility was back in full force last week. The three major domestic indexes posted several days of losses before experiencing wide swings on Friday. By week’s end, the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX), which investors use to help measure fear in the markets, had increased by approximately 70%. The VIX also reached its highest point since February.

Despite a number of equities posting last-minute gains on Friday, all three domestic indexes had sizable losses for the week.

In fact, they posted their worst weekly performance since March. The S&P 500 dropped 4.10%, the Dow declined 4.19%, and the NASDAQ gave back 3.74%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE also lost ground, decreasing 3.96%.

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Weekly Update: October 8, 2018-Examining Economies

October 8, 2018


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Featured Article: Examining Economies


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Salmon BLT


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


Examining Economies

Although new data continued to show strength in the U.S. economy, markets stumbled across the globe last week. The S&P 500 lost 0.98%, the Dow dropped 0.04%, and the NASDAQ declined 3.21%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE struggled, posting a 2.35% loss.

While U.S. and international stocks followed similar paths last week, data is beginning to show that our economic outlooks may be very different for the moment.

U.S. Strength in a Growing International Divide
The latest labor report helped underscore some of the differences between the U.S. economy and the rest of the world.

While the data missed the mark for new jobs added, September marked the 96th-straight month of job growthand the lowest unemployment level since 1969. The report pushed interest rates higher, which contributed to last week’s equity losses.

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Weekly Update: September 24, 2018-New Records and Changes

September 24, 2018


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Featured Article: New Records and Changes


Economic Calendar


Recipe of the Week: Lemon Mascarpone Parfaits


Tax Tips


Golf Tips


Healthy Lifestyle


Green Living


New Records and Changes

Last week brought new tariffs and data, and another look at changes coming to equity classifications. Overall, the S&P 500 gained 0.85% and the Dow was up 2.25%, while the NASDAQ dropped 0.29%. International stocks in the MSCI EAFE had sizable growth, posting a 2.89% increase.

A Look Back: Last Week’s Tariffs and Mixed Housing Data

For months, fears of a global trade war have dominated headlines. Last week, China and the U.S. launched new tariffs on each other’s products, but the latest round of this trade skirmish had an interesting effect.

Rather than feeling concerned, both analysts and investors interpreted the tariffs to be lower than what they expected. As concerns about the global trade war calmed, both the S&P 500 and Dow reached new record highs.

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