2017 Year in Review

2017 Year in Review

2017 delivered impressive returns across stock markets both US and international.  The S&P 500 gained 21.8%, The Dow Industrials 28.1% and the NASDAQ 29.7%  The best performing asset classes were US Large Cap Growth stocks (average gain 30.2%) with FAANG stocks (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google) gaining an average 49.7% on top of 2016's outstanding returns. General Electric bucked the generally favorable trend for large cap stocks, falling 44.7% in 2017.

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How to start your financial New Year with a bang!

How to start your financial New Year with a bang!

Towards the end of the year most of us are guilty of doing whatever it takes to get through the holiday season. We have great intentions to stick to our resolutions for 2018 but by the end of January they are oftentimes abandoned. We may feel bad about not reaching our goals because we focus on what we didn’t accomplish.

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Q&A with David Edwards: How should I re-balance my asset allocation for retirement?

Q&A with David Edwards: How should I re-balance my asset allocation for retirement?

Question: I am 54-years-old and plan on retiring at the age of 56 from a Federal Government position. I currently have approximately 25% of my total assets in aggressive non-IRA mutual funds. Since I have over half of my total assets in higher risk investments and stocks are at an all-time high currently, should I re-balance my accounts?

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What is the fiduciary standard and why is it important to you?

What is the fiduciary standard and why is it important to you?

Undoubtedly, you are seeing the word fiduciary being thrown around a lot lately. So what exactly is the fiduciary standard, what does it mean to you as an investor, and how do you know if the financial professionals you work with are required to uphold it?

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Q&A with David Edwards: Should I sell my stock to pay off my mortgage?

Q&A with David Edwards: Should I sell my stock to pay off my mortgage?

Question: I am less than three years away from retirement and have 80% of my stock portfolio in a particular stock which has grown about 30% in the last two years. My mortgage is at 4.4% and my 401(k) is about 1/3 of my total assets (the other 2/3 being stock). I am single with a salary between $100,000 and $150,000. I was thinking of paying off my mortgage by selling about a quarter of that particular stock which would include the capital gains and fees. Is it wise to sell stock at this time to payoff the mortgage?

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Q&A with David Edwards: Should I Wait Until I am 70 Years Old to Retire?

Q&A with David Edwards: Should I Wait Until I am 70 Years Old to Retire?

Question: I have just heard that people should forget about retiring until they are 70 years old. Does this only apply to a certain target audience? I am thinking about retiring when I am 60 years old (9 years from now). I have about $2,300,000 in investments split equally between a 401(K) and other investments. My wife and I have always lived well under our means.

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What a long, strange year it's been!

What a long, strange year it's been!

US stocks celebrated the 30th anniversary of the 1987 stock market crash by making yet another all time high.  US stocks as represented by the S&P 500 are up 16.9% YTD, double our forecast at the start of the year. The S&P 500 made 51 new records so far this year - 25% of trading days.

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Answers to your questions about credit freeze and credit monitoring

Answers to your questions about credit freeze and credit monitoring

Our bulletin over the weekend recommending that you freeze your credit reports after the Equifax breach prompted quite a response from media and clients. Daisy Maxey at the Wall Street Journal interviewed us about the ways in which consumers can deal with the fallout from the Equifax data hack.

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Heron Wealth recommends that you freeze your credit reports

Heron Wealth recommends that you freeze your credit reports

The Equifax Credit Bureau announced last week that cyber criminals obtained personal details (name, social security, address, birthdates and credit card information) of approximately 143 million US consumers during the period of mid May through July 2017.  This is neither the first nor last such hack we will see in our modern ultra-connected age.  

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Mid Year Review - Slow but Steady?

Mid Year Review - Slow but Steady?

In our December 2016 year end review we wrote, "No forecast now, no forecast until April.  We can't recall another time in the last 30 years that we were so uncertain about what to expect from the US government, and how that would affect the key drivers of stock market returns - revenues, earnings and interest rates.

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Implications of the Trump Presidency for US Stocks

Implications of the Trump Presidency for US Stocks

After 107 days of the Trump Presidency, we believe that this administration is determined to be the wildest reality TV show of all time.  People say, "War is God's way of teaching us geography."  Perhaps Donald Trump is God's way of teaching us about the Federal Government?

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The 2016 Year in Review

The 2016 Year in Review

In January 2016, we projected that the S&P 500 would gain 5% for the year, but we noted we would revisit that estimate in July.  In July, noting that an earnings recession among US corporations was coming to an end, we elevated our forecast to 10%.  For the full year, the S&P 500 rose 12.0%, so close enough.  Full details of US and world Indexes are here.

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Presidential Election Recap, and What Comes Next

Presidential Election Recap, and What Comes Next

In April 2014, we wrote:With 0.0% of precincts reporting, CNN declares Hillary Clinton CNN the next president of the United States. Really? We haven't even gotten through the 2014 mid-term elections yet, yet campaigns (and the media circus that lives for campaigns) are already gearing up for 2016.

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Hey "Millennial," Give Yourself a Break, You Were Dealt a Tricky Hand

Hey "Millennial," Give Yourself a Break, You Were Dealt a Tricky Hand

The media does not generally portray millennials in a positive light. This holds true for perceptions of the savings habits of millennials. Millennials are still seen as the generation living in mom's basement. Whether they are doing so because they are, in fact, diligently saving, or because they are "failure to launch” kids is not usually specified.

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