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Archive for December, 2018


How Will Higher Interest Rates Affect Your Investments?

The US Federal Reserve Open Market Committee raised interest rates again last week by a quarter of a percent. How will higher interest rates affect your investments? There are several ways that that higher rates will affect your portfolio both immediately and over the long term. Here are a few thoughts on the subject.
Immediate Effects of Higher Interest Rates on Your Investments

U.S. Treasuries
Corporate Bonds
Dividend Stocks

U.S. Treasuries and Corporate Bonds
If you currently have U.S Treasuries, AA, or AAA corporate bonds in your investment portfolio, they just became a little less valuable when the Fed raised rates last week. And, if the […]

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What Investments Should You Choose Right Now?

There is always a risk in giving or receiving investment advice. Many times do we read that an expert is making suggestions based on “what their charts show.” There may be useful information in their research but there is also a huge fudge factor. This is because the “expert” is not really giving you specific advice but only relaying what their “chart” might be predicting. Meanwhile, as the market is heading downward every day, you are wondering this, what investments should you choose right now?
General versus Specific Investment Advice
General investment advice, when it as some value, is based on past […]

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Defensive Investment Strategy for 2019

As the year ends and investors celebrate the holidays with family and friends, the stock market is deep into correction territory and the real estate market may not be very far behind. The suggestion one hears from all sides is that it is time to adopt a defensive investment strategy for 2019 and perhaps beyond. But, just what is a defensive investment strategy? When should you go defensive? And when will it be time to get aggressive again? First, here are some thoughts about going defensive for the coming year.
Defensive Investment Strategy for 2019
As a practical matter, what investments should […]

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Pros and Cons of Infrastructure Investing

With the Democrats in control of the House of Representatives for the next two years a consensus may be reached to fund upgrades in the sorry state of US infrastructure. This issue needs to be addressed but has repeatedly been pushed back due to political fights over attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act or fund a big wall between the USA and Mexico. Assuming that funding goes through to repairs roads and bridges, water treatment and the power grid, or rail links and airports, what are the pros and cons of infrastructure investing. And, where would the best places […]

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When Investments Are Volatile Should You Sell or Buy?

The stock market has been in a selling mood for the last two weeks and the bears are predicting more of a selloff. The VIX indicator of market volatility is roaming in the low 20s which is higher than the teens where the CBOE volatility indicator resides during periods of no market turmoil. As market falls it would appear that many investors have decided to take a little profit while others are buying in expectation of a rebound. The question is if this is the start of a long term slide, a more substantial market correction, or just a bump […]

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When Investing Becomes Dangerous What Are Your Best Choices?

The long-term bull market is not only weakening; it is becoming a treacherous market according to Mad Money’s Jim Cramer. So, when investing becomes dangerous what are your best choices? Here is some of what Cramer says.
Between the mixed messages on U.S.-China trade and concerns about an economic slowdown, day-to-day stock-picking is becoming very challenging for the average investor, CNBC’s Jim Cramer acknowledged on Tuesday.
“We’ve got to call a spade a spade. This market isn’t just volatile, it’s treacherous,” he said after yet another turbulent trading session on Wall Street. “I don’t want the treachery, which is not going to […]

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How Much Will Your Investments Be Worth in One, Five, and Ten Years?

Investors are concerned today as the market corrects, the trade war threatens to be long term, the Trump tax cut effects are wearing off, and earnings are taking a hit. But, one needs to put things in perspective when looking at long term investing. When making investment decisions, ask yourself how much will your investments be worth in one, five, and ten years.
Stock Market Investment Perspective
The New York Times has an interesting article in this respect. Despite recent losses, stocks are riding high when you look at the longer term.
Lately, the markets have been rattled about the prospect that a […]

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How Does Algorithmic Trading Affect Your Investments?

The US stock market just experienced one of its more impressive down days ever, with the S&P 500 losing 783 points out of 27,782. This was not the worst percentage drop ever but it vied for the most points of the S&P 500 lost in one day. There are lots of valid concerns about the longevity of the current bull market such as an uncertain trade war, rising interest rates, and tepid earnings. However, much of the blame for the one-day drop in the market is being placed on trading algorithms that control roughly 80% of daily stock trading. That […]

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How Do You Choose an Investment to Hold for Five Years?

The stock market goes up and down and the business news reports every daily gain and loss as though it were a prediction for permanent success, or long term dismal failure. Pundits have likened the reporting of the stock market to an old-fashioned melodrama. Nellie is tied to the railway tracks. Will the hero get there on time? But, he is delayed. But, maybe she will get loose. Maybe the train will stop. However, agonizing over the daily fluctuations of the market is not really the best way to pick a longer term investment. Many successful investors only invest for […]

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