Outlook for a Recession

February 29, 2016 5:59 pm

If one looks at the returns for the S&P 500 from 1980 through 2015, the “down years” (returns of negative 7% or greater at year end) have all been tied to one of three events: a recession, a bubble bursting, or a credit crisis. In this week’s commentary, I talk about the first cause of […]

Talking you off the Ledge

February 1, 2016 3:56 pm

January was an exceptionally rocky month for stocks. But our clients have been remarkably quiet, calling us infrequently about the markets. Have we done an extremely good job of educating them not to panic? Or have they just come to accept volatility’s drama? Or, are they simply very busy and ignoring the negative sentiment pervading […]

A Volatile Start to 2016: What’s Driving the Markets These Days

January 21, 2016 8:06 pm

There’s an old axiom that when looking to buy a house, the only three things that matter are “Location, Location, Location.” Well as 2016 has started, the market has really begun to worry about “Oil, Oil, Oil.” Yes there are other issues, many of which you are all quite familiar with, but at this point […]

2016 Outlook: The Wall of Worry

January 4, 2016 5:21 pm

Going into 2016 the Wall of Worry is high. Then again, stocks traditionally climb that wall of worry. Even in 2015, when there seemed to be a mountain of fears, stocks were resilient. The Nasdaq ended up; the S&P was pushed very modestly into positive territory and the Dow was essentially flat when dividends were […]

Volatility – When to be Nervous and When to be Calm

November 9, 2015 5:25 pm

Now that the August/September swoon has passed and the markets have recovered their swagger, I can talk about volatility without sounding alarmist. Volatility is simply the relative rate of price change, meaning how far the price of an asset moves from a particular reference point. Volatility can be low (small moves) or high (dramatic moves) […]

Big Announcements to Social Security and Medicare-What They May Mean for You

October 16, 2015 2:08 pm

If you’re retired, and have started to collect Social Security you may want to skip this week’s news and go out and enjoy the fall weather that has arrived in New England. In the news are two announcements that can and will affect retirees- specifically those who collect Social Security and/or Medicare. Changes to Social […]

Mixed Messages and the Q4 Stock Market

October 5, 2015 3:29 pm

Talk about mixed messages! First there is the economy itself. For most of the year, the data has been positive (housing, labor, consumer spending, credit availability, inflation, etc.). However, it is not unusual for a negative indicator to be released alongside a positive one, throwing doubt as to the direction or pace of the recovery. […]