Are we there yet? Are we there yet? If you have children or have ever been a child you have heard or said that in a vehicle at some point in your life. For parents of young children, it can start before the car. It is also the question that all of us are asking after the worst start to the year for the S&P 500 in 52 years.* To add to that, we are seeing high inflation that has caused the Fed to raise rates and bonds have also had one of their worst starts to the year as well with the Barclays Bond Index down just over 10%.** Are we at the bottom yet? As a true economist would say, our response is “It depends.”
It depends on how well the Federal Reserve’s aggressive .75 % hike in June works to curb inflation. It depends on how the conflict in Ukraine ends and how long it lasts. It depends on companies repairing broken supply chains or creating new supply chains so they can produce goods efficiently and predictably. It depends on inflationary wage growth slowing. It depends on China being able to avoid shut downs as its economy tries to get going. It depends on how the upcoming mid term election results come in. It depends on how the $350 billion in Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds are deployed.
Nobody can say they definitively know if we are at the bottom yet or not. We know that timing the market is a losing strategy and one way to limit risk is to have a well-diversified portfolio. We know that our planning approach gives us confidence that the families we work for are investing for the long haul. We know that we are always here for you to discuss your situation, look it over and help in any way we can. Eventually we will all look at the worst start to a year for the S&P since 1970 from the all-knowing perspective of looking out the rear view window. Until then we expect the S&P index representing the 500 largest companies in the US to rebound some and end the year higher than we are now. We also believe the worst of the changes in the bond market are behind us and that future rate increases will have a lower impact on bond values.
On the Personal Side:
I would like to boast that my girls and I came in 3rd Place with the Jeep themed Lady Liberty in our neighborhood’s highly competitive 4th of July Parade. I look forward to seeing how long this high I am riding from our victory lasts. I also look forward to getting my very first tattoo commemorating this milestone.
The girls have started out on a summer full of camps, dance, the beach, tubing in the river, catching frogs in the pond and I am most excited about a trip out to see some National Parks in the great state of Washington. I plan on bringing a wooden spoon in the car to respond to the “are we there yet?” question just as my parents did.
On the Business Side:
This past quarter offered some challenges for the office. We had two separate COVID outbreaks in the office forcing us to work remotely a couple of weeks. We are excited that everyone is back. Our goal is to maintain the phones seamlessly so we hope that we did not inadvertently miss any calls.
This coming quarter Anna will be marrying her awesome fiance Philip.
Our other goal this past quarter has been to verbally touch base with everyone to temperature check. Many times we find that discussing how the markets are moving and what factors are causing those moves can really help.
If you need anything at all, we ask you call the office directly at 336-540-9700 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Now you can also text our dedicated text if that is a more convenient way to communicate. To text us, please send a message to 336-860-7646.
We want to connect with you more via social media. Let’s connect on LinkedIn, follow my channel on YouTube or follow my page on Facebook. We will be posting regularly on our blog as well, so be sure to check it out for personal financial advice, market insights and more.
We have had quite a few clients pass away this past year. We are honored to serve their families and heirs to help guide them through the and offer financial guidance. Often we are able to assist in coordinating other professional to assist in the legal and accounting arena in many states when the need arises. We know that settling an estate is a daunting task and if you have friends or family navigating that process who may want assistance, please introduce us.
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Featured Blog Post:
Many times when working with families we will find that they hold an over concentration of one stock. While these companies may seem bullet proof and feel like they are the right fit, holding a large amount in one single company can present some problems. Why Investors Should Avoid Overconcentration
Third Quarter Outlook:
We see the following five main themes for the third quarter as of now.
INFLATION– This coming quarter we are most focused on inflation and the Federal Open Market Committee (the Fed) when they meet July 26th and 27th. We believe that the Fed’s June move to raise interest rates by .75% instead of .5% will play out by helping curb inflation. If inflation numbers do indicate improvement and we see an adjustment up of only .5% we would expect the equity markets to react in a positive manner. We expect inflation to be kept in check.
SUPPLY CHAIN– We expect China to get a hold on COVID and their exports to begin to recover without the pain of all out shut downs. This base line manufacturing alone should significantly improve supply chain issues and help curb inflation associated with those issues.
STRONG DOLLAR- The strong dollar presents some interesting opportunities. The currency exchange has essentially discounted goods from these countries and we feel that companies in developed countries where COVID has been managed may be appealing.
OIL PRICES– Prices at the pump are likely to come down slightly. We expect the price of a barrel of oil to come down to the $100 range which is a lot more palatable for consumers.
CONSUMER SPENDING- We expect consumer spending to stay strong. Throughout COVID we saw households spend more on goods than services. Watch out for continued snarls with air travel, demand for tables and people generally getting out and about at pre COVID levels.
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Planning for tomorrow today.
Disclosures: The S&P 500 is a capitalization-weighted index of 500 stocks designed to measure performance of the broad domestic economy through changes in the aggregate market value of 500 stocks representing all major industries. The Barclays Capital U.S. Aggregate Bond Index, which used to be called the “Lehman Aggregate Bond Index,” is a broad base index, maintained by Barclays Capital, and is often used to represent investment grade bonds being traded in the U.S. Barclays Capital (BarCap) U.S. Aggregate Bond Index is made up of the Barclays Capital U.S. Government/Corporate Bond Index, Mortgage-Backed Securities Index, and Asset-Based Securities Index, including securities that are of investment grade quality or better, have at least one year to maturity, and have an outstanding par value of at least $100 million.