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Category: Invest Confidently

Is the End of the Bond Bull Market Finally Here?

Is the End of the Bond Bull Market Finally Here?

​For about 35 years, investors have enjoyed a bull market in bonds. At the start of 1982, the interest rate on 10-year U.S. Treasury bonds was 14.2 percent. By November 1, 2016, interest rates had fallen to 1.8 percent.1 Since bond prices increase as interest rates fall, U.S. Treasuries (and other types of bonds) have rewarded many investors with attractive total returns during the past few decades. In the natural course of events, bull markets end and bear markets begin. About…

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Investment Strategies for an Expensive Marketplace

Investment Strategies for an Expensive Marketplace

​ August 2, 2016 Investment Strategies for an Expensive Marketplace As we enter the eighth year of the current bull market, many ‘experts’ are calling for a correction and the arguments (as always) are compelling. I don’t believe anyone knows what the future will bring but I do believe prudence would dictate taking a more balanced approach to risk management. The following strategies are ones I believe worth consideration in the current environment. Continue Reading

Setting An Example

Setting An Example

​Setting an example for future generations… Do your children or grandchildren spend summers mowing lawns, repairing computers, or selling movie tickets? Perhaps, they have part-time jobs during the school year, bagging groceries, or working in a local shop. No matter the type of work done, if a young person has earned income, he or she can save in a Roth IRA. While saving for retirement probably isn’t even a blip on the radar for most young people, their older relatives are…

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Weathering a Volatile Market

Weathering a Volatile Market

​Investing during the past couple years has been like driving down a rutted dirt road in a car with worn shock absorbers: fraught with jarring ups and downs. At times like these, it can be helpful to look back and realize we have weathered difficult markets in the past. A good starting point may be August 1979 when the headline on the cover of BusinessWeek declared equities (stocks) were dead. The accompanying article explained, “The Dow Jones industrial average set its…

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Page Six – Emerging Markets

Page Six – Emerging Markets

​If there were a “Page Six” for finance and economics, emerging markets would be splashed across it. Remember the saying, “Buy low and sell high?” Well, emerging markets have not performed well for quite a long time, and that has a lot of people speculating about what may happen in the next few years. Analysts at BlackRock opined, “Emerging-market (EM) equities are fighting an uphill battle, held back by an appreciating U.S. dollar, falling commodity prices, and flagging exports. These only add…

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Raising Rates? What Will Happen?

Raising Rates? What Will Happen?

​What will happen after the Federal Reserve begins to raise rates? If the Fed’s efforts to raise interest rates are successful, what will happen next? It all depends on whom you ask: Dr. David P. Kelly, CFA, Managing Director Chief Global Strategist, JPMorgan: “Looking back at prior Fed rate hikes suggests that at first, investors have a tough time stomaching the idea of higher yields. However, as it becomes increasingly apparent that the Fed is hiking rates for all of the right…

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Emerging Markets

Emerging Markets

​The travails of emerging markets. Just a few years ago, emerging markets were the toast of the town. In general, emerging countries recovered much faster than developed countries following the financial crisis and global recession. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index delivered pretty remarkable (and highly volatile) performance during the past decade. According to the MSCI fact sheet, annual returns have ranged from down 53.33 to up 78.51:  Annual Returns (%)  2005 34.00  2006 32.14  2007 39.42  2008 -53.33  2009 78.51 …

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Norming Behavior

Norming Behavior

Ip! Ip! OORAY! Greg Ip, Chief Economics Commentator at The Wall Street Journal, was blogging about business cycles. He wrote, “After a perplexing start to the year, the economy is starting to make sense…[Recently released data] has begun to help solve three puzzles that have hung over the U.S. and global economies in the last year.” The three puzzles were: 1. There was no surge in consumer spending in the United States. Despite a mammoth drop in oil prices, retail…

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