Stock Market

Individual Stocks – Are they for you?

2020 Q1 COMMENTARY:
Contrary to what logic might suggest, the most difficult time to be an investor is when the financial markets are in the late stages of a multi-year upward trend. As we witness market levels hit record highs, the appetite for adding new money to investments can start to wane for fear that the most opportune time to buy has already passed us by. It’s an innate thought process. Since we were little, we’ve all been taught that too much of a good thing is not always a good thing, and it’s a legitimate lesson that I’m sure we’ve all learned multiple times in our lives.

Ross AlmlieIndividual Stocks – Are they for you?
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What a Difference!

Wow, what a difference a year makes. Last year at this time, there was a fear that the economy was overheating and in need of continued interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve. The 10-year U.S. Treasury note had just hit 3.25% and the service sector strength as measured by the ISM (Institute for Supply Management) measured its highest read in history.

Fast forward one year, and here we sit with the 10-year note sitting at 1.54% and growing fears of a recession. With a yield curve inversion, a trade war with China and other countries, and overall investor exhaustion from the daily deluge of news that moves markets some days and falls on deaf ears on others, it’s pretty remarkable that the market has maintained these levels.

Ross AlmlieWhat a Difference!
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Stock Market Volatility… How do you cope?

Stock Market Volatility
How do you cope?

It’s no secret that the sustained generational low levels in interest rates have helped the stock market climb to near record highs over the past decade. Many would assert that the record rise in stock prices is artificially propped up under monetary policy decisions that have forced savers to take on more risk in order to find more acceptable returns. Nevertheless, for those of you who have not let volatility of stocks shake you into making bad decisions, you have been rewarded for sticking with stocks despite the general public’s irreverence towards them. Low interest rates have certainly played a part in your success, but not all of it.

Many people view stocks in the context of “how long will the party last?” It’s a rational thought, especially if you’ve lived through some vicious downturns like 1987, 2001, and 2008. Yet, underneath the shadows of some pretty dreary market conditions, transformative technologies still emerged amidst the wreckage, and they don’t get enough credit for the role played in the economic recovery and subsequent rise of the stock market. Apple, Google, Facebook, Netflix, and Amazon are the sexy names that grabbed the headlines, but what about the likes of Nvidia, Intuitive Surgical, Lululemon, and Regeneron? They are just a few lesser known names that have played a part in the market’s rise, and I could name several more!

Ross AlmlieStock Market Volatility… How do you cope?
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