Money Talks – March 18, 2017

This week on “Money Talks,” Principal Bil Lako, CFP®, and Director of Research Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, are joined by Principal Jennifer Thomas, CFP®, to discuss the release of President Trump’s tax returns and the Federal Open Market Committee’s decision to raise the fed funds rate. They also cover how the sectors fared in the market during the week and several economic releases, including the Producer Price Index and the Consumer Price Index. Jennifer and Bil discuss a common problem of investors who save the majority of their retirement funds in tax deferred accounts: taxes. They look at how required minimum distributions can bump a taxpayer into a higher bracket and the importance of having tax-diversification in your portfolio. The experts finish off the show with listeners’ questions on fair value; Dow darlings UnitedHealth Group, Home Depot and Visa, and whether or not it is a good time to buy bank stocks.

Case Study: Having Tax Diversified Assets for Retirement

Principals Jennifer Thomas, CFP®, and Bil Lako, CFP®, are joined by Director of Research Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, to discuss a common problem of investors who save the majority of their retirement funds in tax deferred accounts: taxes. They look at how required minimum distributions can bump a taxpayer into a higher bracket and the importance of having tax-diversification in your portfolio.

Market Roundup: Mixed Moves End in Slight Gains for the Week as Fed Increases Interest Rates

The markets opened the week mixed as investors anticipated the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates later in the week. Tuesday’s action was marked by a selloff in the oil market, as investors worried that an increase in U.S. production could impede efforts to reduce supply, which has kept oil prices sliding since January 2016. In economic news, the Producer Price Index climbed 0.3% in February following a 0.6% jump in January. As expected, midweek, the Federal Reserve announced it would raise interest rates, and stocks rose on the news. Furthermore, the Fed officials indicated they expect to raise short-term interest rates three times this year. Indices ended with mixed moves on Thursday, with Financials ending strong while Health Care and Utilities took a breather. Housing starts ticked up in February, increasing 3% last month while building permits dipped 6.2%. The indices continued with mixed moves on Friday as the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 shed some points while the NASDAQ closed with fractional gains. The University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment survey showed that consumer confidence is on an upswing this month. The index hit 97.6 in a preliminary reading for March, versus February’s final reading of 96.3. Looking elsewhere, industrial production registered a flat reading in February. The result was shy of estimates for an increase of 0.3%.

Money Talks – March 11, 2017 Interview with Cyber Security Expert Michelle Thetford

This week on “Money Talks,” Bil Lako, CFP®, and Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, interview cyber security expert Michelle Thetford, Vice President Client Strategic Solutions for Schwab’s Advisor Services business. Michelle discusses how Schwab protects its clients from online theft and fraud, and provides steps individuals can take to reduce their chances of being a victim. Michelle also shares several stories of significant fraud cases and how they were eventually discovered and resolved. 

Money Talks – March 4, 2017

This week on “Money Talks,” Director of Research Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, is joined by Managing Associate K.C. Smith, CFP®, and Senior Associate Jarrett McKenzie, CFP®, CWS®, to discuss interest rates and the possibility of an increase in rates in March and sector performance for this past earnings season. They also discuss the second reading of gross domestic product for fourth quarter 2016, home prices, consumer confidence and personal income. K.C. and Jarrett discuss a fictitious situation of a client who decided to invest in a “Trump Portfolio” without consulting his financial adviser. They cover the excessive fees the investor paid and how he inadvertently put himself at risk because his investment created an overexposure in several holdings. The hosts round out the show with listeners’ questions on 401(k) fees, Netflix, the choice between buying and leasing a car, and Skyworks Solutions.

Case Study: Let Your Adviser Know About Outside Invested Assets so They can Properly Plan for You

Troy Harmon, CFA, CVA, K.C. Smith, CFP®, and Jarrett McKenzie, CFP®, CWS®, discuss a situation of an investor who decided to invest in a “Trump Portfolio” without consulting his financial adviser. They cover the excessive fees the investor paid and how he inadvertently put himself at risk because his investment created an overexposure in several holdings.

Market Roundup: Dow Breaks 21,000 After President Trump’s Congressional Address

The Dow Jones Industrial average kicked off the week closing at an all-time high for the 12th consecutive day on Monday, while the S&P 500 hit a new record level. The NASDAQ also eked out a gain. In housing news, pending home sales dipped in January, decreasing by 2.8% versus expectations for sales to rise by 1.1%. The major indices closed in the red zone on Tuesday, ahead of President Donald Trump’s congressional address. Gross Domestic Product numbers were shy of expectations, as a second estimate of U.S. economic growth showed fourth-quarter GDP held steady at 1.9%, versus expectations of a 2.1% expansion. Additionally, consumer sentiment ramped up to a 15-year high in February, according to data from the Conference Board. Sentiment increased to 114.8, up from a reading of 111.6 in January. The market was back to record levels on Wednesday with Basic Materials and Financial stocks leading the upswing. In his address on Tuesday night, President Trump promised “massive” tax cuts for the middle class and U.S. companies as well as $1 trillion in infrastructure investment. Meanwhile, the ISM Manufacturing Index rose to 57.7 versus an expected reading of 56.3. The following day, the Dow declined from record-level territory while the S&P 500 and NASDAQ also traded lower with Basic Materials and Financial stocks leading the downswing. Friday’s results were mostly flat, but the Dow still closed the week over 21,000. Bond yields soared late week, possibly in response to Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s indication that interest rates are likely to rise when the Committee meets later this month.