On Our Minds

Slow, Stable Domestic Growth

The equity markets continue to move higher on news of steady economic growth and the receding COVID virus. The S&P 500 Index has grown in each of the first seven months of the year and when this has occurred historically, it has led to further gains through year-end.

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As a Parent, When Should I Start Saving for College?

Next to buying a home, a college education is the largest expenditure most parents will ever make. The key is advance planning. The more money you save now, the less money you or your child will need to borrow later. It is important to begin saving as early as possible so you can earn interest, dividends, and/or capital gains on as much money as possible.

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Growing earnings in a dynamic economy support U.S. markets

Economic indicators are proving that consumers and businesses are fueling the economy with pent-up demand on spending. Consumers are reacting to the vaccinations with robust spending on vacations, furniture, automobiles and homes, while businesses are trying to ramp up production and services to meet the need. With GDP growing at 6.5% and now back to pre-pandemic levels, this pace is not sustainable and should decelerate in the coming quarters. This does not foreshadow a recession: the economy is returning to steady 2-3% sustainable growth with stable employment and lower inflation. GDP growth would have been stronger if supply chains, home building, and product delivery had not been suppressed by inventory and labor shortages.

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Don't put off planning for retirement

Thinking about retirement? You should, no matter your age or circumstances.

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The best-performing sectors were energy, financial, healthcare, and materials.

Welcome to the Roaring ’20s

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I'm thinking about buying a home. What do I need to know?

Buying a home is one of the most significant financial decisions you’ll make in your lifetime. It is something that can last anywhere from 15-30 years, and it’s not something you can – or should – do on your own.

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Ransomware protection and remediation tips

Ransomware is a type of malicious software that locks up your files so that you no longer can access them and demands you pay a ransom to unlock the files. Paying in Bitcoin or cybercurrency gives the cybercriminal anonymity and cannot be traced.

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First quarter corporate earnings exceed expectations

The S&P 500 index was up slightly in the month of May due to growing investor confidence in higher 2021 corporate revenues and earnings. With the receding COVID pandemic, consumers and businesses are emerging from social-distancing protocols and accelerating their spending. This strong growth in demand for goods has led to inventory shortages in many cases. Temporary delivery delays for raw materials and components are constraining global growth. Employment is expanding, however, which means goods manufacturing should improve and service industries should gain momentum.

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Secure your financial information during hurricane season

When you think of preparing for hurricane season, chances are you’ll focus on protecting yourself and your loved ones. Shelter, safety, and supplies, of course, are of paramount importance. In that regard, check FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) and the National Hurricane Center for some important operational guidelines.

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Fed remains resolute in bond purchases and yields

Most first-quarter corporate earnings reports have been meeting or beating expectations and this has raised the confidence that equity valuations are not excessive. The S&P 500 Index is trading at a reasonable 22x Price to Earnings multiple, but earnings estimates are being actively raised by analysts who see stronger revenue and profit growth in the second half of 2021. Financial, industrial, energy and basic materials companies are showing considerable revenue acceleration, expense control and order backlogs. Earnings from Apple, Alphabet, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft and Qualcomm were all above expectation and guidance was strong for the year ahead. Both growth and value stocks are rising, but the pervasive microchip shortage is constraining production at some cyclical companies like Caterpillar and Ford. Small Cap and Mid Cap stocks continue to lead the market, while the service sector, especially travel and leisure, is gradually recovering.

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