1st Quarter Market Update
The marathon run of 9 straight quarters of growth for the S&P 500 came to an end this quarter. Before you find the nearest tall building, the S&P only fell by .76. The truth is, not all marathons are run at an even pace just as market growth is not a steady pace. Much like marathons, building wealth and growing your investments takes time and patience. It takes training yourself to not react to short term market movements and keep your eye on the long-term goals.
The return of volatility resulted in 23 days in the first quarter where the S&P 500 moved more than 1% up or down. On the bond side, the Fed’s interest rate hike this past quarter has raised borrowing rates and driven the 10- year treasury yield up .33%. What this means to you is that your credit card interest rates, home equity lines and other variable debt instruments may show a slightly higher rate of interest on future bills. In light of all of these investment changes, we are continuing to monitor and update portfolios to be sure that the risk levels are appropriate for each clients’ individual needs.
On the Personal Side:
Evan will run the Boston Marathon this coming Monday. To say we are all excited and proud of her would be an understatement. If you do choose to follow along at home, she is bib number 18618. This will be her second time running the race and the first that the girls and I will be there to cheer her on. This is a huge accomplishment and the result of many mornings of dedicated runs even before the sun comes up. As of now, it appears that it will be raining and in the 40's in Boston so the terrible weather the last few months in Greensboro should serve as great preparation.
Lila will be 9 in May and recently added braces to her beautiful smile. I thought I may have a few years to wait until the braces thing, unfortunately she has her father’s large teeth. The good news is that braces are cool in 3rd grade and this should help her later when she will have a second round of orthodontic improvement in her early teens. Amelia is excelling in school. She keeps us laughing as she seems to be six going on 15 and has a comic, as a matter of fact way of explaining everything to us, even if it does mean talking over Evan and I. Most meals I am reminding her that the plate of food in front of her is not to be used as a microphone and that it provides nourishment for her. (That is a work in progress) I am looking forward to defending last years title in the “Reeling 4 Research” fishing tournament benefitting UNC Children’s Hospital. It is always a great time and my official kick off to Spring and a great time for a great cause. If you would like to help support this cause, please click here.
On the business side:
PLEASE DO NOT DRINK THE WATER in our office. We are monitoring it to confirm it is safe as both Brooke and Ashlie are expecting their first children this year. Brooke is due to have a boy in May and Ashlie is having a girl in September. We are overjoyed at their growing families and I am so appreciative of the hard work they have both done to prepare the office for their time away.
We are excited to have two UNCG students interning with us this Spring. Karly Butler and Katherine Cowell have been doing a great job learning how our office operates and will be a huge help moving forward.
If you want to get more regular updates or have timely financial information or even see the upcoming photos of my wife Evan crossing the finish line at the Boston Marathon social media is where to find that. Lets connect on LinkedIn or Twitter at @mattloganinc ,or follow me on Instagram or like my page on Facebook.
Volatility always results in a lot of questions from clients and prospective clients. We are here to listen, to assist and to guide you in times of uncertainty in the markets. If you have friends who are looking for the same, feel free to send them my way. I would love to listen to them and see if I can find a way to help them.
As I mentioned, we have consolidated our online account access through E-money. To access your accounts, click here. The system really helps me advise you in a more effective manor by allowing me to see your whole financial picture and craft a plan to fit your needs. You can include account not held here in your analysis as well as any debt or assets you have and most of them link directly to other sites, allowing you access to a walking net worth statement. If you need assistance setting this up, let us know and we would be happy to walk you through the system.
The bus has been busy. Many non profits have events in the first quarter here and we have been donating to help them all raise money. I had the honor of driving myself to take the men from the shelter at Grace Church to Golden Corral last month. That was definitely a highlight for me. To use the bus, please contact [email protected] for more information and to schedule a trip. The bus comes with our driver and the cost is relatively low at $50 an hour to use it.
Featured Blog Post:
Instead of a featured blog post, I want you to visit our new website. We have worked hard to make it a little more user friendly. Any feedback is greatly appreciated.
Second Quarter Outlook:
Looking forward, we see a few risks that are becoming very loud and quite a number of great signals that seem to be keeping quiet. The greatest risks to the financial markets and the global economy seem to be Geopolitical risks born in Washington as we enter into a potential trade war through in the form of tariffs with many countries. This could greatly impact prices of certain goods that we import and lead to shake ups in many industries. The other risk being handed down from Washington is the instability within our own government.
The quietly great things that are happening. The biggest help from Washington will likely be the tax plan that should increase consumer spending as well as corporate investment in the coming year. These boosts in spending should bode well for the markets. As the other fundamentals that bode well, we are still seeing lower growth in wages which leaves room for economic growth. Technology had a major pull back with privacy concerns with Facebook. This sector remains strong despite the pull back. Employment remains strong with an unemployment rate of 4.1% and manufacturing showed a jump of 22000 jobs in March. The overall global economy seems to be moving in an overall upward direction. While we expect the growth to cool in the coming quarters there are no major signs of a recession in the near future. For further in depth analysis, please click here for the Second Quarter 2018 Outlook.