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Tag Archives: Financial Planning

The Growth and Inflation Scare of 2018 – Part II

“Peter Cook is the author of the ‘Is That True?’ series of articles, which help explain the many statements and theories circulating in the mainstream financial media often presented as “truths.” The motives and psychology of market participants, which drives the difference between truth and partial-truth, are explored.” On a day like today, when the holiest of all data points is released (employment situation), it may seem strange to focus on a wider picture.  But we must remember that no...

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The World’s Most Misunderstood Investment – Part 2

“Think of income annuities as the term insurance of the annuity world.” – Professor of Retirement Income Wade Pfau of The American College in an article for Forbes – August 27, 2015. As I outlined in Part I, fixed-rate and fixed indexed annuities can be utilized as a sleeve in an asset allocation program to minimize overall portfolio volatility. Fixed annuities are not subject to downside risk, and in the case of FIAs, allow partial participation in the upside of major stock indexes like the...

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Technically Speaking: The Death Of Bull Markets

“Technically Speaking” is a regular Tuesday commentary updating current market trends and highlighting shorter-term investment strategies, risks, and potential opportunities. Please send any comments or questions directly to me via Email, Facebook or Twitter. The big question for investors at the moment is whether the 9-year old bull market has finally come to its inevitable conclusion or is it just a “pause that refreshes?”  While the optimistic “hope” is that this is just a pause within a...

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The Other Face Of Risk – Bonds

Usually, when it’s a good time to own high quality intermediate term bonds – those that serve as workhorses of most investors’ portfolios, it’s a bad time to own “high yield” (a nice marketing term for “junk”) bonds, and vice versa. That’s because lower interest rates provide a good climate for relatively safe bonds that don’t deliver much yield, and because the economic weakness that low rates signal is often a danger to shaky borrowers. Conversely, the rising rates that can inflict...

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Inverted Yield Curve – Will This Time Be Different?

The stock market’s positive tone quickly evaporated after the expected quarter-point hike in the Fed Funds rate on March 21st.  Markets love certainty; the latest rate increase was the sixth since the FOMC started raising rates in December 2015 and baked into the market cake. As such, a short relief rally ensued. With certainty past, focus shifted to Jay Powell’s first press conference as Fed Chairman. Powell’s message wasn’t as dovish as markets hoped. A fourth rate hike was too close a...

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Technically Speaking: Predictions, Market Bounce & Risks

“Technically Speaking” is a regular Tuesday commentary updating current market trends and highlighting shorter-term investment strategies, risks, and potential opportunities. Please send any comments or questions directly to me via Email, Facebook or Twitter. I love trolls. Seeking Alpha, which should be part of your daily reading process, has been graciously posting my articles for the last couple of years. One of my favorite things to do is read the comments from readers. Most of the...

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The Growth and Inflation Scare of 2018

“Peter Cook is the author of the ‘Is That True?’ series of articles, which help explain the many statements and theories circulating in the mainstream financial media often presented as “truths.” The motives and psychology of market participants, which drives the difference between truth and partial-truth, are explored.” Someone has it wrong.  Is it the bond market or the stock market?  Or the Fed? As bond yields push up against multi-month highs and long-term levels of technical resistance,...

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A Day At The Beach, Part 2 — Global Asset Allocation

See Part 1 – Here In this second installment relating my trip to the Research Affiliates Advisor Symposium in Newport Beach, CA, I will discuss the firm’s second major line of research, which involves the appraisal of global asset classes. The firm manages the PIMCO All Asset (PAAIX), and All Asset, All Authority (PAUIX) funds. These are global asset allocation funds that seek the maximum real return, often by emphasizing non-mainstream asset classes. The funds own stocks, bonds,...

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The World’s Most Misunderstood Investment – Part 1

Annuity. Say the word and watch facial expressions. They range from fear, disgust, confusion. Billionaire money manager and financial pitchman Ken Fisher appears as the senior version of Eddie Munster in television ads for his firm. He stares. Deep eyes ablaze with intensity. The tight camera shot. A dramatic pause, then solemnly he delivers the line: “I hate annuities. I’d rather go to hell then sell annuities.” Which obviously means you should too. The financial professional with a net...

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Technically Speaking: The “Walking Dead” Market – 3000 or 1500?

“Technically Speaking” is a regular Tuesday commentary updating current market trends and highlighting shorter-term investment strategies, risks, and potential opportunities. Please send any comments or questions directly to me via Email, Facebook or Twitter. In May of last year, I wrote a blog post debating the likely path of the market through 2019. To wit: “The chart below is a Fibonacci retracement/extension chart of the S&P 500. I have projected both a 123.6% advance from the 2009...

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