Good evening, this is your market update for Tuesday October 6th.
The Dow rose by triple figures for a second day as the dollar continued its decline and price of commodities rose. Energy, mining, and technology stocks were the best performers. The price of gold rose to as high as $1045 an ounce in New York on speculation that currencies will depreciate and inflation will heat up. The stage for today’s market action was set before the open. Australia became the first “Group of 20” nation to lift its benchmark interest rate since the recession began, anticipating the economy will improve. A merger added to the good mood. Emerson said it would buy Avocent for $1.2 billion in cash, and both stocks rose as a result. Emerson was up 1.4% and Avocent gained 21%. The Dow was up as many as 174 points before closing with a gain of 131.50 points at 9731.25. NYSE volume totaled about 1.23 billion shares. The S&P 500 gained 14.26 points while the Nasdaq was up 35.42 points. The 10-year Treasury note was down 10/32 to yield 3.26%. For more market news visit Virtuswealth.com and don’t forget to listen to Your Money, Your Retirement, airing every Saturday’s from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Securities and advisors services offered through VSR Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC.
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Virtus Wealth hires Jackie Dixon as Service Assistant. . .
Jackie Dixon has just joined our team as Service Assistant. She comes from an Education and Customer Service background. Jackie graduated from Tarleton State University with a BBA in Marketing and worked for Fidelity Investments, State Farm, and Blue Cross Blue Shield New Mexico in customer service and training. She took time off from corporate America to raise her children, however, could not sit still so she substitute taught at her children’s school and taught in her Church’s Mother’s Day Out Program. For Jackie, teaching was like customer service because you are helping someone to understand something new or better!
Jackie has been married to Don for 18 years and they have 3 children: Jade 15, Jennifer 13, and Nolan 6. Jackie is active in the Byron Nelson Drill Team Booster Club and loves to scrapbook and watch peewee & Dallas Cowboy football.
To learn more about our team or Virtus Wealth Management in general, visit: http://www.virtuswealth.com/Our_Team.aspx
***Securites and Advisory Services offered through VSR Financial Services, In, a Registered Investemnt Advisor and member FINRA/SIPC. Virtus Wealth Management is independent of VSR.
What is the Baltic Dry Index and Why is Important for Investors?
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) tracks the cost to ship raw materials, including fossil fuels, by sea. It is a very detailed index that tracks different size cargos as well as many different geographical routes in order to get a good measure of the changes in cost to ship by sea.
Since we have become more and more of a global economy, understanding the cost and changes in volume of cargo being shipped by sea is a very good leading indicator. Too many investors get caught up with news that historically has been lagging indicators, i.e. changes in the trend of the indicator occurs after the stock market changes direction. One of the most well known, historically speaking, lagging indicators is the unemployment rate. There is a lot of focus on the unemployment rate in the media and by investment journalist. I understand it is news and should be reported because we all have loved ones, friends, or people we know who have lost jobs over the last year. However, in terms of when or if to invest in the market, not much can be determined by watching the unemployment rate.
But back to the Baltic Dry Index, since we are looking at the very beginning of the manufacturing process, changes to it may give us an indication of what is going on in the global economy. As you have heard me state many times, we must eliminate the white noise when investing. The Baltic Dry Index cuts to the core of what is really going on in the global economy.
Another reason it is important is that a high percentage of shipping trade is done on credit. This global crisis is more of a credit issue than anything else. Thus the Baltic Dry Index can give us an indication of credit is improving or not. Let’s take a look at how the index is performing this year in the following chart:
Interestingly, the index peaked in June has been steadily declining since, dropping over 40% from its 2009 peak. The S&P 500 has risen over 10% since the BDI peaked. In many cases this would be called a market divergence and be a real concern for the future direction of equities. However, as it normally works, the devil is in the details. As you can see the index bottomed in December of 2008 while the S&P 500 bottomed in March of 2009. The index was a leading indicator because it started rising before the stock markets did. The uptrend happens to be the same time as many of the global stimulus dollars were being spent. Specifically China was spending billions on raw materials at the time in order to build a stockpile. So the peak in 2009 is probably an anomaly due to China. The question is where the index should be today.
The number I am watching is 2000. I would like to see the trend to start leveling out and changing directions if we are really going to see economic growth in early 2010. Since large cargo shipping has long lead times and is at the early stage of the production process, it should move upwards prior to any improvements seen at the back end of the sales cycle (e.g. earnings).
Let’s continue to eliminate the white noise and focus on leading indicators!
Don’t forget to listen to my radio show, airing every Saturday on CNN 1190 radio (am) from 4:00 to 5:00 pm. We will be pre-empted by the Texas Tech football games the next two weekends, but will be back on air October 17th. We also have previous shows taped on the website.
Virtus Wealth Management
2435 E. Southlake Blvd
Southlake, TX 76092
The attached commentary contains opinions and analysis that are provided by the author for informational purposes only and should not be used as the primary basis for an investment decision. You should consult with Brian should you have any questions if this strategy is suitable for you. The technical analysis cannot guarantee a profit or protect against a loss.
Please feel free to forward this to any friends you believe will benefit from this information.
10 Mistakes You Maybe Making
Now that the markets and economy has stabilized and estate sizes may have changed, as well as the fact that the estate tax laws may change significantly over the next 2 years it is time to revisit our estate plans. Following are the top 10 errors I see people making with their estate plans. If we are making one of these errors, now is the perfect time to make the proper changes.
Top 10 mistakes People make with their estate planning
- Not having a current will or trust.
There really isn’t a need to add an explanation on this one. We all know we should have a will or trust in place, but like a financial plan, doing it can be seen as a pain or nuisance. Based on my experience, let me just state that it is much more of a pain and nuisance for your loved ones that have to deal with your estate when there is no will or trust.
- Choosing wrong Guardian
Choosing a guardian in many cases can be the most difficult part of preparing estate plan. There are many variables that come into play when deciding this very important decision. However, in many cases the ability of the guardian to manage money for the children is not considered. In cases where this maybe the case, consider using a corporate trustee over the funds to ensure proper money management.
- Not naming back up trustees
We have seen this issue many times and the cost and inconvenience can be significant. Trustees can back out or refuse to take the trust for many reasons.
- Not funding trusts
Why have a trust if it isn’t funded. The entire estate settling process may be twice as hard and costly if there is a trust not funded correctly. There is usually a “pore over” section of a trust to include limited assets not necessarily specified in the trust. However, people should not rely on that to account for all assets.
- Not coordinating beneficiary designations
Most estates include non IRA accounts, IRA accounts, Insurance, and other assets (real estate). In many cases people have different beneficiaries on IRA and Insurance investments than what is desired in their trust or will. Beneficiary designations on IRAs and Insurance take priority over those stated in a will or trust.
- Not taking advantage of gifting exemptions and/or gifting wrong assets
Gifting tax laws are currently advantageous for high net worth individuals. Understanding these tax laws may save significant tax dollars. Gifting should be reviewed to understand if it best fits your objectives.
- Not reviewing plans at least every 3 years
Life changes: not reviewing the estate plan leads to errors that may lead to significant tax savings being lost or assets ending up with the wrong beneficiaries.
- Naming children as beneficiaries
Children as beneficiaries can lead to major problems. The courts will normally require that a court supervised and costly conservatorship be created to control the money while the child is a minor, which will have the effect of depleting the proceeds
- Not understanding IRA/Pension Rules
There are so many tax laws that impact estates in respect to IRAs and pensions (too many to explain in this newsletter). Very few of these are understood by the average investor. It is imperative that you understand how each and every one of these may impact your estate. The cost to not knowing the tax laws may cost you or your loved ones thousands of dollars.
10. Having too complicated of an estate plan
The K-I-S-S theory (keep it simple) is best used in the average estate plan. Based on my experience, I have seen trusts so complicated that they do more harm than good. In fact, the people making the most money are the lawyers trying to decipher the mess. Not only did lawyers make thousand putting the complicated plan together, their services are required just for the beneficiaries to understand how it is suppose to work. As is the case in most cases, a second opinion is wise. If the first estate planning attorney tries to sell you a very complicated and costly trust, please get a second opinion. Or give me a call and we can discuss the advantages and disadvantage.
I am not an Estate Planning Attorney so please consult with one while preparing your estate plan. However, I provide my experience and knowledge to my clients as a service at no additional charge. That way, you have someone in your corner with experience to help prevent being taken advantage of or making mistakes when preparing your plan. Please call me if I can be of assistance in your estate planning needs.
The Virtus View
Although there are many reasons investors take a position in an investment, there are really two primary methods to evaluate a particular asset; fundamental and/or technical analysis. I want to discuss Gold in this Virtus View because it has been in the news a lot lately and has made a move up here recently. Gold and metals/commodities in general trade on technical analyses more than stocks, and a technical break out appears to be why gold is on the move right now.
As we have discussed in the Virtus View before, the simplest of technical analysis is the trend of a particular investment. Many experts refer to this as the higher highs and higher lows or vice versa of an investment. So if we take a look at the S&P 500 in Chart 1 for the last 6 months, you will see the trend is up and we continue to make higher highs and higher lows, with the exception of one little correction in the summer (which is why your investment horizon is so important in both fundamental and technical analysis).
Obviously, when stocks are moving down it looks just the opposite and has lower highs and lower lows.
Sometimes though, an investment will go through a compression phase where it makes lower highs and higher lows over several months. This is called a pennant or triangle, depending on the previous movement of the investment. Let’s take a look at GLD, the ETF that closes tracks the price of gold.
You can see why they call it a triangle or pennant. When an investment is compressing or consolidating like this, historically when it breaks the triangle it moves significantly to the side it breaks. As I said above, since commodities, including metals, are traded based on technical analysis, moves like this can generate a lot of volume, which in turn makes it way into the news.
But back to the chart, GLD broke upside at around $94.50 and has moved up nicely since. I believe this is a major reason for the gold movement recently. Keep in mind; the fundamental reasons to invest in gold are fears of inflation and to profit from the falling dollar. Not many experts fear inflation on a short-term basis and interesting enough, the dollar broke out on the downside of a triangle at the same time gold broke to the upside.
As for the market, many analysts including myself have looked for a correction since the S&P 500 is up approximately 55% since the low of March 9, 2009. Not since the 1930s have we seen a short-term rally like that. The difference is the market in the 1930s fell 90% prior to the rally of 100% that followed. With that said, the important metric from my view is the fundamental analysis. Since the market is currently trading at an approximate P/E of 15 for next year’s earnings projection (source Standard and Poor’s), I feel it is fairly valued. So, bottom line, it just depends on how much risk an investor wants to take.
Feel free to call Amy and schedule a meeting if you would like to discuss any of this information further.
Don’t forget to listen to my radio show, airing every Saturday on CNN 1190 radio (am) from 4:00 to 5:00 pm. We also have previous shows on the website: http://www.virtuswealth.com/radio.aspx . The September 12th show focuses on gold and metals. Please visit the website if you want to check out the discussion with Kevin Cook, an expert on Gold and other precious metals. This week’s show will have Bill Griffin, local Real Estate Broker.
Virtus Wealth Management
2435 E. Southlake Blvd
Southlake, TX 76092
Join us this week on “Your Money, Your Retirement” on CNN 1190 AM, Saturday at 4:00 Pm Central with Brian Tillotson, owner of Virtus Wealth management and guest-host, local Real Estate Bill Griffin as they discuss where Dallas and the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex is in the Real Estate Cycle…are we recovering, bottoming, breaking even, etc…
Find out how this impacts YOU on the best time to buy and sell Real Estate.
Listen to our previous shows online
The major stock averages touched new highs for the year thanks to favorable signs on the economy. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke also encouraged investors when he said the recession is probably over. August retail sales jumped at the fastest rate in three years primarily due to the cash for clunkers program and manufacturing in the New York region improved for a second straight month. Industrial and raw-material stocks were among the best performers as commodities rallied. Disappointing earnings kept a lid on retailers. Best Buy and Kroger results missed forecasts. Health insurers dropped on concern that health care reform might hurt profits. JPMorgan Chase fell 0.6% after the lender said credit-card defaults increased. The Dow closed up 56 points at 9683. NYSE volume totaled nearly 1.5 billion shares. The S&P 500 gained 3 points to 1052. The Nasdaq was up 10 points at 2102.. 10-year Treasury notes were down 7/32 to yield 3.45%. For more market news visit Virtuswealth.com.
Don’t forget to listen to Your Money, Your Retirement, airing every Saturday’s from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm. This week’s show will have Chuck Weaver from VIP Mortgage.
Securities and advisors services offered through VSR Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC.
September 10th, 2009
Wall Street made it five gains in a row. The S&P 500 and Dow posted new highs for 2009 on an upbeat forecast from Procter & Gamble and gains in energy stocks. P&G predicted a rebound in sales and the shares rose 4.2%. Managed health care stocks advanced as opposition remained in Congress to the President’s health care plan. Technology stocks also enjoyed gains on improved forecasts for chip sales. On the downside, Monsanto warned that earnings would be at the low end of previous forecasts and said it would cut more jobs. The shares fell 5%. First-time jobless claims in the latest week were lower than expected, but were still not at a level that would suggest recovery in the labor market. The Dow closed up 80 points at 9627. volume totaled nearly 1.5 billion shares. The S&P 500 gained 10 points to 1044. The Nasdaq was up 23 at 2084. The 10-year Treasury note was up a full point to yield 3.35%. For more market news visit Virtuswealth.com and don’t forget to listen to Your Money, Your Retirement, airing every Saturday’s from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm. This week’s show will have an expert on gold to discuss metals and where they go from here. Securities and advisors services offered through VSR Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA/SIPC.
Join us and listen to “Your Money, Your Retirement” with Brian Tillotson, Wealth Manager and owner of Virtus Wealth Management with guest-host Kevin Cook as they discuss “Gold” as a commodity and find the answers to the questions below:
1. Why is gold approaching/over $1,000 an ounce? What’s driving this and does it make economic sense in the modern world of finance?
2. Is it a bad sign that gold is in such demand? Are we on the verge of another financial panic?
3. Is the U.S. dollar in danger of becoming less important? Are we in danger of losing our AAA credit rating? Some people say the dollar will lose its status as the world’s reserve currency… is that the trend?
4. Related to this, is China going to sell its Treasury holdings and what does that do to our economy?
5. What were the technical signs you saw that told you gold was going higher?
6. Should gold be a part of everyone’s investment portfolio? What are some ways to safely get exposure to gold and other commodities?
7. What does the price of gold say about global economic health?
8. Is gold the best inflation hedge?
9. Are the gold ETFs such as GLD and GDX good investments? What about the XAU?
10. What about other “commodity basket” ETFs like GSG and DBC?
How does someone flourish during retirement? Best adjust to the changes?
Like any other transition, retirement is one of our biggest life changes/transitions. As with all changes we need – Insight into ourselves – our needs and desires, a vision of a successful retirement, an action plan … and support and encouragement to get there.
Not just stopping working, but creating a thriving lifestyle that addresses each person’s needs for fulfilling relationships, connection to others/society, personal interests and pursuits and a general sense of connection, significance and purpose. Once you have decided to retire how can one best navigate the emotional components of this huge transition?
The old outdated version of retirement has 2 Rs- Rest and Relaxation, now experience the new updated version of retirement has 5 Rs - cool huh!
Retirement is a big life transition and one that needs to be carefully planned and considered. All too often people think happiness will come just because they aren’t working, but there is much more to it than that. Granted, the initial reprieve and stress relief from daily demands of a full-time job may be a tremendous relief of pressure in the short-term, but after a period of time, a few months or a year, other needs and feelings begin to surface. Retirement is a total identity shift – it is a process – not a one day event – if you prepare well financially and emotionally, you can feel confident, purposeful and fulfilled during the process. Today I would like to review the key needs and components of creating a retirement lifestyle that is successful and emotionally rewarding retirement and the transition/change that one goes through.
The 5 Rs of an Emotionally Rewarding Retirement.
What role does self-knowledge play in retirement?
1) Re-Discover you. Discover who you are and want to be now. What is my purpose going forward? How can I be useful and of service? Who am I without my career? How can I best take care of my overall health? Learn about yourself. This part is about building a new identity not based on work. This would be a wonderful time to re-discover you and take time to reevaluate your needs and desires. Understand yourself better and what gives you life satisfaction. What you enjoyed or wanted at 30 or 40 may have changed. It is time to re-explore you – your emotional, social, physical, mental and spiritual needs and desires. Retirement is about you – give yourself the gift of discovery.
What about the role of physical activity? Is this a factor?
2) Raise those feel-good endorphins. Stay as physically engaged and active as you possibly can. Most people overestimate their need for downtime and relaxation and underestimate their need for a wide range of activities that brings physical and intellectual stimulation and overall good health. Don’t get in the habit of being sedentary. Keep activity up – there are many physical and emotional consequences of being sedentary. Keep moving – Daily exercise of some sort will keep you healthy and boost the “feel good” endorphins that help us stay positive. i.e. a water aerobics class, light weights, walking to the store or more aerobic activities such as walking, biking or tennis.
Many people think once you hit retirement it is too late to start something new? Is this true?
3) Re-explore interests & dreams. Develop a variety of personal passions and pursuits. If you are a young retiree this is a great opportunity to not only stay active but to revisit dreams you had put on a shelf for someday – now is that someday! Take risks, learn new things you didn’t have time for before. Possibly go back to school. Find a cause you truly are passionate about. Take up a hobby like painting or fishing. If you’ve always wanted to travel but never had the time – research places and go – now is the time!
What about relationships – once we aren’t working anymore those must change pretty drastically?
4) Redefine your relationship roles. Have frank and cooperative conversations about what you want your relationship to look like and create a vision for the future, together you and the people closest to you can create an energetic vision. Your relationships with your spouse, friends, parents and/or children become more important and different once your role as a worker has been reduced or eliminated. You may need more privacy or more companionship activities together. Have a franxious conversation about the upcoming changes and more importantly – how you FEEL about them. Sharing fears, hopes and vulnerablities will bring you closer together. You may want to see a marriage therapist of coach to co-create your future and what you may encounter as far as change as you navigate the sea of retirement. If you are single it simplifies things because you are mainly considering your needs. Sense work is no longer a source for companionship, you will need to maintain even stronger bonds with friends and seek out new relationships and groups.
Retirement brings a lot of free personal time. Is this a plus or minus?
5) Reorient yourself by building a new routine. While personal freedom and flexibility is wonderful – When you are working your day is shaped by the familiar demands of your career. When you are retired, there is more open space and you now – you must plan your day, week and month. Once you have discovered new interests or rekindled old ones, it will be important to schedule activities and build your day around these activities so that your day is filled with what is most important to you. If not boredom, disillusionment, and depression can set in.
Michele Wahlder, MS, LPC, PCC
Life & Career Coach . Author . Speaker
“We can become what we dream of if fat, furry worms can fly.”
- From “Butterfly” by Jana Stanfield/Joyce Rouse”
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- Daily Market Update: Tuesday, October 6th
- Virtus Wealth Hires Jackie Dixon as Service Assistant
- What is the Baltic Dry Index and Why Is It Important for Investors?
- 10 Mistakes You May be Making in Investing
- The “Virtus View” week of 9.18.09
- CNN 1190 AM Radio Show:
- Daily Market Update
- Daily Market Update:
- “Your Money, Your Retirement” on CNN 1190 AM this Saturday
- The 5 R’s Of Emotionally-Rewarding Retirement
- Looking for An Investment That Is Not Affected By Market and Economic Conditions?
- ATR, Volatility and Standard Deviation