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2016 Second Quarter Report: The Shadow of Brexit

It certainly feels like we’re in a bear market, what with the surprising “Brexit” vote in the UK, the dismal first few days of the year and increased volatility across the board.  So it may come as a surprise that the second quarter of 2016 eked out small positive returns for many of the U.S.

Elections and the Stock Market: Much to Do About Nothing

It’s a presidential election year and with that comes the invariable stock market correlations seeking to predict election results or forecast the market’s direction.  On one hand, the performance of the stock market during the two months leading up to the election has been somewhat of a predictor of who will win the race.

What are your Portfolio Performance Expectations?

In the story of Alice in Wonderland, Alice arrives at a fork in the road and wonders aloud which road to take. A smiling Cheshire Cat appears and asks her what her destination is, to which she replies, “I don’t know.” The toothy cat then proffers the only possible response, “Well, then it doesn’t matter.”

Under Water in the Caribbean

By all accounts, Puerto Rico is a beautiful, sunny place to visit, especially in the Winter.  But it’s hard to fathom how this U.S.

New guidelines, better advice?

Most people think that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulates the investment markets and providers of investment advice, and that the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) regulates the Wall Street sales agents.

Beware the bogus IRS

Most people have seen bogus emails purported to be from the executors of the estate of Nigerian princes or other obscure foreign notables who want to give them millions of dollars, and sometimes they get bogus calls telling them they can win a lottery sweepstakes or receive debt relief.

The Good Side of Bad Markets

After the recent downturn in the U.S. and global stock markets, you can be pardoned if you wished that the markets were a bit tamer.  Wouldn’t it be nice to get, say, a steady 4% return every year rather than all these ups and downs?

Avoiding the Pain

There’s no question that we experience emotional pain and anxiety when our portfolios are losing money due to market downturns.  Behavioral scientists tell us that we feel losses twice as keenly as positive returns.

Life Insurance Company Ratings Explained

Life insurance has always been considered to be among the safest of all financial instruments. Even as banks were being shuttered during the Great Depression resulting in people losing their life’s savings, life insurers emerged as the bed rock of financial security.

The Great Panic of 2016

Wow!  There’s no diplomatic way to say this: the global stock markets are in panic mode right now.  In two weeks of trading, the U.S. S&P 500 index is down 8% on the year, which brings us close to correction territory (a 10% decline), and has some predicting a bear market (a 20% decline). 

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