Resist over-indulging on the hot stock flavor of the moment

With the presidential election now behind us, investors need a new uncertainty to ponder. Fortunately, the markets are seldom short on subject matter. The recent action in equities has been notable, not for how much stocks went up or down, but because of which stocks went up and down.

Why investors should resist the urge to reach for yield

“I can’t remember the last time we reached for yield and it worked out in our favor.” That was the first thought shared in a recent discussion at our office about the current market environment. All things being equal, investments that pay bigger dividends or higher interest rates sound more attractive. The problem, of course, is that things are almost never equal.

The Fed helped revive stocks, but its actions created new risks

Whatever it takes. That’s the unofficial policy the Federal Reserve has adopted in its mission to save the U.S. economy from the coronavirus. It’s also (by far) the biggest reason why stock prices have rallied more than 50% in less than six months.

The S&P 500 has never been more top heavy

Never before has the S&P 500 been as top-heavy as it is now. The five largest companies by market capitalization (Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet) comprise more than 22% of the index. Those five companies have as much influence on benchmark performance as the bottom 363 companies combined. When it comes to the most widely cited index for U.S. equities, not all stocks are weighted equal.

How to plan for an unplanned retirement

Most often, we approach retirement planning with the assumption that clients can work as long as they need or want to, but sometimes early retirement is thrust upon you. And that comes with real challenges.

Stocks healthier in countries with better pandemic response

The cure for the common stock market may be as simple as better policy. At least this year.

Why this is a golden opportunity to add gold to your portfolio

If you’re looking for silver linings during these strange economic times, gold offers more than a glimmer of hope. While likely to outperform if stocks suffer another sharp sell-off, you don’t need to be bearish on equities to have a positive outlook on gold.

Amid unprecedented uncertainty, target allocation should be your investment guide

Economic uncertainty has never been higher in our lifetimes than it is now.
The quantifiable effects from coronavirus and the global shutdown it triggered remains as difficult to predict as April weather in Minnesota. Thanks to historic amounts of stimulus from Congress and the Federal Reserve, the stock market has dumped more sunshine than snow on weary investors in recent weeks. But while the S&P 500 recapturing half its losses certainly soothes some financial pain, a schizophrenic market remains clouded with questions.

This market downturn is unlikely to match 2008

Six trading days is all it took for the S&P 500 to fall 10% from its all-time high set Feb. 19, the fastest 10% correction in history. In less than a month, the Dow Jones industrial average lost 20%, officially entering a bear market.

Stock valuations elevated, but not yet peaked

An old Wall Street axiom suggests the stock market is the only place in the world where buyers are more comfortable paying a higher price for the product. If that’s the case, the line at the checkout counter is about to get longer. There’s no denying the majority of U.S. stocks have become more expensive. What most people really want to know: “Is it still a good time to invest in equities?”