Month: September 2013

September
30

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Default, Merit pay & Visions!

The Markets “It’s déjà vu all over again,” Yogi Berra reportedly said as he watched Yankee teammates Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris smack back-to-back home runs for the umpteenth time. Americans are experiencing déjà vu all over again, too. Sure, the prospect of another fiscal showdown doesn’t electrify a crowd like a couple of major…

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September
30

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Should I worry about the government shutting down (again) or defaulting on its debt?

You would think we’d get used to this by now, as many Americans have grown tired of these congressional battles—which they view as petty and unnecessary. You might wonder why we choose to spend any time at all on political items like this relative to our usual discussions of the economy and investment markets. From…

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September
30

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – September 30, 2013

(0) The 3rd and final estimate of GDP growth was unchanged from the second estimate of +2.5%, despite consensus assumptions for a slight increase to +2.6%. Inventory investment was revised downward slightly while state/local spending were bumped up a bit, but these were tiny adjustments. This is certainly old news now, as third quarter GDP…

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September
30

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Trusts: Planning Tool That Can Make Sense

Trusts are an important estate planning tool. They don’t require large sums of wealth before they can make good sense and they don’t have to be overly complicated or expensive to setup. A trust is an agreement between a maker and a trustee to manage certain assets. A trust can be created as part of…

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September
28

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – September 23, 2013

The biggest news of the week was the FOMC meeting, press release and news conference, but we won’t rehash our earlier note of the week. Long-story short, the ‘taper’ is postponed for now, and that drove sentiment (up) much more than did the underlying economic data last week. Since most market participants appeared to be…

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September
18

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Fed Notes – “Taper Caper” – September 18, 2013

There hasn’t been this much excitement over a Federal Reserve meeting in quite some time.  The FOMC concluded their September event today and all eyes were on the finale of the ‘taper caper’ (yes, we made that up – and of course it’s not fair to pull Carson into the mix but… http://youtu.be/cjquGpmgwOo) Surprise!  Despite what…

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September
16

Provided by: Jon McGraw

QE & Flying Cars!

The Markets Baseball great Yogi Berra once said, “In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.” He may have been on to something. Last May, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke introduced the idea the Fed’s economic stimulus program, known as Quantitative Easing (QE), might be ratcheted down sooner rather than…

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September
16

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – September 16, 2013

Economic data was being watched perhaps a bit more closely this last week with the Fed meeting upcoming and talk of the ‘taper’ hanging in the balance. (-) Retail sales for August gained a meager +0.2%, which disappointed a bit relative to the expected +0.5% increase. Removing auto and gasoline components brought the core sales…

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September
09

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Confluences & Compensation

The Markets Confluences are the building blocks of the world’s waterways. When two or more rivers meet, changes in velocity and turbulence tend to result in geologic scouring; erosive activity that may alter the shape of the river and its bed. The action may produce a ‘scour hole’ downstream from the confluence. For a river…

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September
09

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Update – September 9, 2013

Despite the Labor Day-shortened week, several important releases kicked off the fall market season (traditionally the week where everyone on Wall Street gets ‘back to business’). (+) The ISM manufacturing index for August came in better than expected for August, rising from 55.4 to 55.7 (while expectations called for a 54.0 reading) and bringing the…

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