April, 2024

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A Short History of Stocks

The Big Picture

Confused about where we are today? A favorite exercise is to go back to first principles to consider how we got to where we are. (That is a favorite way to find fresh insights). On the equity side, you have to go back a century or so. Equities were considered speculative endeavors, best suited for gamblers and punters. The exceptions? A handful of “Widows & Orphan” stocks, like Ma Bell, some railroads, utilities and the rare bank that was not suffering regular runs.

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The News is Making You Miserable

A Wealth of Common Sense

There was a recent poll about my home state of Michigan where they asked people for their thoughts on the state of the nation’s economy today. Just 35% of people described the economy as excellent (6%) or good (29%) while 65% described it as either not so good (28%) or poor (37%). But when asked how they would describe their own personal financial situation these days, a majority of people (61%) described their circ.

Economy 145
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Chicago PMI Falls to 17-Month Low

Advisor Perspectives

The latest Chicago Purchasing Manager's Index (Chicago Business Barometer) fell to 37.9 in April from 41.4 in March. This is the fifth straight monthly decline and the lowest level for the index since November 2022. The latest reading is worse than the 44.9 forecast and keeps the index in contraction territory for a fifth consecutive month.

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Mastering Your Finances: A Guide for New College Graduates

Carson Wealth

Congratulations, recent college graduate! You’ve worked hard to earn your degree, and now you’re ready to embark on the next chapter of your life. This is an exciting time – one filled with lots of changes, like starting a new career and learning how to manage living on your own. As you transition into the “real” world, one of the most crucial skills you can develop is managing your finances effectively.

Budgeting 143
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Live Demo: How to Achieve Reconciliation Zen

Speaker: Nancy Wu, Head of Sales and Customer Success at SkyStem

Automation generally supercharges any process and brings its value to the forefront. See how infusing automation such as ART (our month-end close solution), into your close can get you to the next level of closing. We will share a live demo of SkyStem's solution, ART and share the key elements of month-end close automation. Through ART, we'll take a look at: What month-end close automation entails Which process steps can and should be automated Benefits of achieving process automation, and Why i

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Personal Income increased 0.5% in March; Spending increased 0.8%

Calculated Risk

The BEA released the Personal Income and Outlays report for March: Personal income increased $122.0 billion (0.5 percent at a monthly rate) in March , according to estimates released today by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Disposable personal income (DPI), personal income less personal current taxes, increased $104.0 billion (0.5 percent) and personal consumption expenditures (PCE) increased $160.9 billion (0.8 percent).

Food 124

More Trending

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What Recession? State Coincident Indicators

The Big Picture

Between book leave and COVID I have been pretty quiet lately. Since it’s been a few months, I thought we could take a quick look at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia’s State Coincident Indicators out for both January and February 2024.1 As the charts above show, the economy on a state-by-state basis has markedly improved from Q4 2023’s softening.

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30 Years of Financial Market Returns

A Wealth of Common Sense

A colleague recently asked me to run the 30 year annual returns for U.S. stocks, bonds and cash. He just wanted the returns. I couldn’t help but slice and dice the numbers and overanalyze the data because that’s what we do here. Let’s dig in. First the annual return numbers for the S&P 500, 10 year treasuries and 3 month T-bills over the 30 years ending in 2023: Some thoughts about these numbers: St.

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FHFA House Price Index Rebounds in February to New High

Advisor Perspectives

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) house price index (HPI) rebounded to 423.0 in February, a new all-time high. U.S. house prices increased by 1.2% from the previous month and are up 7.0% from one year ago. After adjusting for inflation, the real index was up 0.8% month-over-month and up 5.1% year-over-year.

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Helping Aging Parents Manage and Protect Their Finances

Carson Wealth

Your parents taught you everything you know about money. From opening your first checking account to taking out your first car loan, they were always there to guide you. But as your parents get older, they may begin turning to you for help with their finances. How do you begin to navigate this new reverse dynamic? It’s not always easy. There are both practical and emotional challenges to consider before you step in and take over your parents’ financial situation.

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2024 Lending Outlook: Innovations and Evolutions in the Financial Sector

As we step into 2024, the lending landscape evolves rapidly with technology, regulations, and market dynamics driving change. For banks and financial institutions to stay competitive and meet the evolving needs of their customers, these drivers must be understood and engaged with. Lenders can anticipate significant transformation fueled by technological advancements, regulatory shifts, and changing consumer behaviors.

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Case-Shiller: National House Price Index Up 6.4% year-over-year in February

Calculated Risk

S&P/Case-Shiller released the monthly Home Price Indices for February ("February" is a 3-month average of December, January and February closing prices). This release includes prices for 20 individual cities, two composite indices (for 10 cities and 20 cities) and the monthly National index. From S&P S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Index’s Upward Trend Persists in February 2024 The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S.

Assets 122
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Everything I Am

The Irrelevant Investor

The most important thing that determines how successful you are in life cannot be quantified. Success is a loaded word that means different things to everyone. At its core, success is happiness. Hard stop. If you’re rich and miserable, you’re not successful. There’s a hierarchy of happiness. At the foundational level is health. Without that, you have nothing.

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DOL Releases Final Fiduciary Rule

Wealth Management

The rule, which takes effect in September, “protects the retirement investors from improper investment recommendations and harmful conflicts of interest,” according to Acting Labor Secretary Julie Su.

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Generational Luck in the Housing Market

A Wealth of Common Sense

Millennials around my age group graduated into the teeth of the Great Financial Crisis. The labor market stunk and not just for a short while. The unemployment rate in America averaged nearly 7% from 2006 through the end of 2015: It was hard for young people to find work. And if you did find a job it probably wasn’t something you actually wanted to do.

Marketing 139
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Banking on Loyalty: Holistic Financial Advice for Unparalleled Business Growth

Speaker: Joe Buhrmann, MBA, CFP®, CLU®, ChFC® Senior Financial Planning Practice Management Consultant eMoney Advisor

During an era of evolving consumer preferences, the banking sector is undergoing a profound shift. As customers continue to broaden their perspectives, banking professionals must support their customers' financial wellness by providing holistic financial advice that aligns with individual goals and circumstances. Without adapting, financial institutions will find that loyalty may crumble amid uncertainty.

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Producer Price Index: Wholesale Inflation Rises to 2.1% in March

Advisor Perspectives

Wholesale inflation heated up last month but came in slightly lower than expected. The producer price index for final demand increased 0.2% month-over-month (s.a.). On an annual basis, headline PPI accelerated from 1.6% in February to 2.1% in March.

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Is Sector Neutrality in Factor Investing a Mistake?

Alpha Architect

The justification for neutralizing sectors in factor strategies is a work in progress. To date, academic researchers haven't had an empirical model to mimic the impact of removing sector "effects" on the measurement and performance of factor strategies. The authors develop and test a two-component model to address the question of, "Is Sector Neutrality in Factor Investing a Mistake?

Investing 121
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PCE Measure of Shelter Slows Slightly to 5.8% YoY in March

Calculated Risk

Here is a graph of the year-over-year change in shelter from the CPI report and housing from the PCE report this morning, both through March 2024. CPI Shelter was up 5.6% year-over-year in March, down from 5.8% in February, and down from the cycle peak of 8.2% in March 2023. Housing (PCE) was up 5.8% YoY in March , down slightly from 5.8% in January, and down from the cycle peak of 8.3% in April 2023.

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Don’t Be Afraid

The Irrelevant Investor

I want to talk about the feelings we get when putting money to work at all-time highs. But first, a quick programming note. Two of the things I love the most are movies and business. Nobody talks about the intersection of my two favorite topics like Matt Belloni. I read him every week at Puck and listen to him every week on The Ringer’s The Town.

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Navigating Financial Storms: Strategies for Building Resilient Balance Sheets

Speaker: Carolina Aponte - Owner and CEO, Caja Holdings LLC

In today's rapidly changing business environment, building a resilient balance sheet is crucial to the survival of any business. A resilient balance sheet allows a company to withstand financial shocks and adapt to changing market conditions. To achieve this, companies need to focus on key strategies such as maintaining adequate liquidity, managing debt levels, diversifying revenue streams, and prioritizing profitability over growth.

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FINRA Fines TD Ameritrade $600K for Missing 'Red Flags' in Options Trading Applications

Wealth Management

The brokerage regulator argued the firm’s automated process for approving options traders on its self-directed platform missed instances where clients submitted applications with conflicting information.

Clients 117
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10 Years From Now

A Wealth of Common Sense

It feels like we’re in a weird place from the perspective of the economy and financial assets. Housing prices seem too high. Consumer prices seem too high. Stock prices seem too high. Government debt seems too high. I understand why people are worried. These things are cyclical and the lines can’t go up and to the right forever. Bear markets, financial crises, recessions, etc. are features we cannot do away wi.

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What to Tell Clients in a Nasty Election Cycle

Advisor Perspectives

The article to which this “Concerned American” refers was about investing in low-cost diversified index funds and U.S. Treasury instruments, such as TIPS. It wasn’t about politics, nor was I even thinking of the election as I wrote the piece.

Clients 117
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Bearish Thrusting Candlestick Pattern – Formation And Trading Ideas

Trade Brains

Bearish Thrusting Candlestick Pattern: Technical analysis is a key method for market participants speculating on the movement in the price of stock. It consists of multiple methods to predict price movement. These methods were developed based on the historical reaction and movement of prices. One of the methods used in technical analysis is analyzing the candlestick patterns.

Banking 111
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Putting the ‘Tech’ in Spend Management Techniques

Speaker: Wayne Spivak, President and CFO of SBA * Consulting Ltd., Industry Writer, Public Speaker

If you’re lost in the world of spend management needs and your GAP analysis is lacking perspective on the future state of your business performance, listen up! With the advancement of technology, the implementation of spend management best practices and concrete GAP analyses is more streamlined and accessible than ever before. And while this may sound like great news for you and your clients, it won’t be worthwhile unless you have the latest techniques to back up your ambitions!

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MBA: Mortgage Applications Increased in Weekly Survey

Calculated Risk

From the MBA: Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey Mortgage applications decreased 2.7 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending April 19, 2024. The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 2.7 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier.

Marketing 122
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Valuing Artificial Intelligence (AI) Stocks

Alpha Architect

While there is literature that describes the "domain" of artificial intelligence, there are very few, if any that analyze the valuation and pricing of AI stocks. The authors attempt to fill the void with a two part methodology. Valuing Artificial Intelligence (AI) Stocks was originally published at Alpha Architect. Please read the Alpha Architect disclosures at your convenience.

Valuation 112
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11 Investment Must Reads This Week

Wealth Management

After more than two months of positive fund flows, the largest spot bitcoin ETFs have posted outflows in recent days. Morningstar looked at five ETFs trends to watch in the current market environment. These are among the investment must reads we found this week for wealth advisors.

Investing 116
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Is Auto Insurance Becoming a Crisis?

A Wealth of Common Sense

I was perusing the BLS data following the inflation release last week and one number sticks out like Victor Wembanyana standing next to a group of kindergartners. Auto insurance was up 22% over the previous 12 months versus an overall inflation rate of 3.5%. Look at the change in auto insurance rates these past few years: It’s like a meme stock.

Insurance 133
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Connect, Care, Convert: Secrets to Establishing Trust with Niche Markets and Turning Them Into Clients

Speaker: Lynnette Khalfani-Cox, The Money Coach®

Niche markets represent a huge opportunity for the financial services industry in America. From college students and women to communities of color and low-to-moderate-income households, niche populations have specialized financial needs – but they often underutilize many valuable financial products and services. How can you better connect with these consumers?

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NFIB Small Business Survey: Optimism Falls to Lowest Level Since 2012

Advisor Perspectives

The headline number for the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index fell to 88.5 in March, the lowest level since 20212. The latest reading was worse than the forecast of 88.8 and marked the 27th straight month the index has been below the series average of 98.0.

Numbers 119
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Financially Literate Consumers Benefit Everyone

NAIFA Advisor Today

April is National Financial Literacy Month, an annual observation NAIFA wholeheartedly agrees with. But why is financial literacy important and what are we doing about it?

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YoY Measures of Inflation: Services, Goods and Shelter

Calculated Risk

Here are a few measures of inflation: The first graph is the one Fed Chair Powell had mentioned when services less rent of shelter was up around 8% year-over-year. This declined, but has turned up recently, and is now up 4.8% YoY. Click on graph for larger image. This graph shows the YoY price change for Services and Services less rent of shelter through March 2024.

Food 124