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Market Commentary – April 2019

By |2019-08-30T13:11:00+00:00April 24th, 2019|All, Investing, News|

Stock Markets Stocks rebounded nicely. Tech stocks (FANGs – Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google) after leading the way down in last year’s fourth quarter (off 22%) led stocks back up (up 23%). A global stock portfolio earned about 12% this quarter and domestic stocks continued in the forefront. Looking past this quarter, non-domestic markets have fallen short of domestic market returns.  There is no reason to think this pattern will continue. Stock markets seemed to have calmed a bit, and some […]

New York State Office of Unclaimed Funds

By |2019-02-08T19:59:48+00:00February 8th, 2019|All, Family Finances, News|

Over the summer, we had a client ask if there was a place to look for existing accounts or funds they or family members may have accumulated and forgotten about over the years. That sparked Julie’s memory of the New York State Office of Unclaimed Funds (https://ouf.osc.state.ny.us/ouf/?wicket-crypt=8AxvNk1VlCk). You may have noticed the Office puts a kiosk at the NYS Fair every year. Run by the NY State Comptroller’s Office, the Office of Unclaimed Funds serves as custodian of more than […]

2018 Market Insights

By |2019-01-18T14:52:05+00:00January 18th, 2019|All, Investing, News|

2018 was a woeful year for investing. All major stock market indexes were down, bonds enjoyed a year-end rally to finish flat, and commodities such as gold and oil fell. Seeing all asset classes drop in unison is unusual and unlikely to continue. Stocks Stocks began the year on solid footing, but fortunes quickly changed as early February saw a 10% drop in equities. Markets steadied over the spring and summer, with domestic stocks reaching new highs in the early […]

Quarterly Market Commentary – January 2019

By |2019-01-11T21:08:39+00:00January 11th, 2019|All, Investing, News|

Stock Markets December’s market reminds us that risk is real – even after the uptick at the end of the month, a global stock portfolio is down about 15% for the quarter and 12% for the year. Technology stocks (Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Netflix), which have been driving the market to new heights in recent years, were off nearly 20% this quarter. Future returns depend on news, which, of course, can’t be predicted. (If it could it wouldn’t be […]

Rockbridge’s Guide to a “Bear Market”

By |2018-12-28T20:28:56+00:00December 28th, 2018|All, Investing, News|

Depending on the news you read, you may have come across headlines talking about bear markets and stock market corrections. The following is a guide to what they mean and how to put them in the context of history. The conventional definition of a bear market is a price drop in a stock market index of 20% or greater from its high. The most quoted stock market index in America’s investment community is the S&P 500. When people reference our […]

Market Commentary – October 2018

By |2018-10-22T20:20:09+00:00October 22nd, 2018|All, Investing, News|

Stock Markets For the last quarter, stocks are up except for Emerging Markets, which were close to flat. Domestic stocks are seemingly shrugging off the uncertainties of increasing interest rates, trade wars and tariffs. Year to date, an Emerging Market stock portfolio would be down almost 9%. It is not surprising that today’s uncertainties are having a greater impact on developing economies as they tend to have larger debt levels denominated in dollars and exports are a bigger part of […]

Is Your Cash Earning Interest?

By |2018-10-16T18:48:17+00:00October 16th, 2018|All, Investing, News|

Interest rates are rising, and yet you may not be earning much on your cash.  As financial markets finally begin to reflect a recovery from the crisis of 2008-09, the brokerage industry is changing the way they handle customers’ cash, and investors need to pay attention. Over the past ten years we have become accustomed to earning nothing on our cash.  The Federal Reserve kept rates at essentially zero for so long that investors came to expect no return on […]

Understanding Bond Returns

By |2018-10-12T14:25:06+00:00October 12th, 2018|All, Investing, News|

We had several clients this year reach out to ask how bonds were performing in their portfolios. These are great questions, so we created a few items to address what you see in your statements.  Some people notice they have held bonds for several years but seem to have a loss with their holding. This may come from their monthly statement from the custodian. Below is an example of how that looks: From looking at this statement, it seems this […]

New Tax Law Makes Bundling Gifts to Donor-Advised Funds Attractive

By |2018-10-09T17:19:58+00:00October 9th, 2018|All, Family Finances, News|

“Give, but give until it hurts.” – Mother Teresa –    I don’t think Mother Teresa paid much attention to the tax code, but her quote is unusually prescient for 2018 taxpayers.  The changes have made it unlikely to get a tax break on money given to your favorite charities. When the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was signed into law late last year, the intent was to reduce taxes and simplify the tax code for all Americans.  Some of […]

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