We believe the stock market’s 10% decline from the September 20th high is due to a confluence of three major fears for investors. First is the fear of rising interest rates and the Federal Reserve Bank’s monetary policy. Second is the fear of slower corporate earnings growth. Third is the fear of trade wars, especially with China. We believe that recent stock market weakness reflects temporary risks and is NOT a precursor to deeper economic problems.
When we sit down with new clients, one of the first questions we usually ask is “Do you have a budget?” This single question can lead down many different paths to help us better understand your thought process when dealing with money. Hearing about your budget also offers a surprising amount of insight into your values, priorities, and goals.
Between the seemingly daily headlines announcing changes to Medicare and the alphabet soup of supplemental care insurance, we at Affiance Financial feel it is important for you to know what to expect with open-enrollment season upon us.
With the world of financial technology (FinTech) ever changing, the landscape for how someone keeps a budget has never been more robust. In fact, some say it can be done in the palm of your hand... While some choose to stick with the traditional, manual method of tracking income and expenses — Yes, I’m talking about you, Excel — the vast number of mobile apps available make budgeting more accessible and automated than ever.
The year is half over and despite the stock market’s ups and downs, the total performance for the year is neither too good nor too bad. As of June 30th, U.S. markets were up, with the S&P 500 up 2.65% year to date. International stocks gave up some of last year’s gains, dropping roughly 5% year to date. And emerging markets, which had a stellar 2017 (being up 37%), gave back about 8% this year, primarily due to an appreciating dollar.
Over the years, Affiance Financial has worked hard to enhance our efficiency. But try as we might, we just can't seem to avoid the game of phone and email tag that occurs when trying to schedule a meeting. You are busy people. Finding room for us on your calendar isn't always easy. We get it. And we want to help.