September Investment Comments

Date posted: September 5, 2014

After a pretty solid start to 2014, the S&P 500 fell 2.0% on July 31st, ending down 1.4% for the month.  This was the first monthly decline since January.  Even so, year-to-date through July the index is up 5.7%, not bad after coming off a 32.4% gain for 2013.  Given recent stronger economic data we […]


Defining Inflation Down

Date posted: September 5, 2014

The U.S. economy has experienced a decade of extremely low inflation—at least by the official statistics.  Over the last ten years, the consumer price index (CPI) compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics has increased just 2.3% per year.  The latest reading was only 2.0%. Does that match your experience?  I’m absolutely certain prices are […]


Philmont Scout Ranch

Date posted: August 11, 2014

“Nothing worthwhile was ever accomplished without the will to start, the enthusiasm to continue and, regardless of temporary obstacles, the persistence to complete.” Waite Phillips   “It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.” Steve Sarlitto Assistant Scoutmaster, Troop 743   Last month Scott Horsburgh wrote about change.  There is an interesting […]


September Investment Comments

Date posted: August 11, 2014

After a pretty solid start to 2014, the S&P 500 fell 2.0% on July 31st, ending down 1.4% for the month.  This was the first monthly decline since January.  Even so, year-to-date through July the index is up 5.7%, not bad after coming off a 32.4% gain for 2013.  Given recent stronger economic data we […]


The Only Constant

Date posted: August 10, 2014

Things change.  Change isn’t always for the better, but change is one of the few constants we can count on, like death and taxes.  Two recent developments cause me to bring up the subject of change, but don’t worry…there aren’t any big changes afoot here! I keep hearing mature adults complain that today’s young people […]


August Investment Comments

Date posted: August 10, 2014

The Dow Jones Industrial Average recently eclipsed another millennial mark, 17,000.  The S&P 500 has been within 1% of 2,000.  Both of these represent record levels. Judging by market behavior, one might think that the economy is doing well.  In reality, the numbers point to a mixed economy similar to conditions of the “recovery” that […]


June Investment Comments

Date posted: June 4, 2014

As winter (thankfully!) turns into spring, the moderate recovery continues.  The National Bureau of Economic Research judges that the U.S. economy began expanding again in June 2009.  This means the recovery, at 59 months, has just surpassed the post-World War II average of 58 months duration for an expansion. The Federal Reserve, Congressional Budget Office, […]

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One IRA Rollover per 12 Months

Date posted: June 4, 2014

What is an IRA rollover?  The IRS defines an IRA rollover as a distribution from an IRA that is payable to the IRA account owner, who must then deposit the proceeds to the same or another IRA within 60 days.  This is not the same as a trustee-to-trustee transfer where one IRA custodian transfers the […]


May Investment Comments

Date posted: May 2, 2014

Weather. Across much of the country, the Midwest and Northeast in particular, this was one cold and snowy winter, one for the record books in many cases. The impact of weather on the economy is actually the subject of much debate among economists. They agree weather is a drag on economic growth. The disagreement is more […]


How Killer are Capital Gains?

Date posted: May 2, 2014

I doubt T.S. Eliot had tax season in mind when he said, “April is the cruelest month” in The Waste Land. Still, that pretty much sums up how most of us feel. Did you have to write the IRS a check this year? I did. One of the main reasons investors often wind up writing […]