Financial Matters

Tips and news from the financial experts at Attentive Investment Managers.
Dec
15

Higher Rates: The Tempest in the Teapot

Higher Rates: The Tempest in the Teapot

Anybody who was surprised that the Federal Reserve Board decided to raise its benchmark interest rate this week probably wasn't paying attention. The U.S. economy is humming along, the stock market is booming and the unemployment rate has fallen faster than anybody expected. The incoming administration has promised lower taxes and a stimulative $550 billion infrastructure investment. The question on the minds of most observers is: what were they waiting for?

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Dec
30

How the Feds Rate Increase Impacts Bonds

How the Feds Rate Increase Impacts Bonds
Prior to a couple of weeks ago, the last time that the Fed raised interest rates was 2006 – now with a mending economy the Fed Committee has increased the federal funds rate to 0. 25%-0. 50%, up from a range of zero – 0. 25%. It is quite likely that the Fed will continue to slowly raise rates over the coming months which will bring a mix of good and bad trends for the investment markets. An important component for investors, with regard to interest rates is the effect rates have on bond holdings. As seen in the example below, there are two major risks to bonds. 1) Interest Rate Risk – As interest rates climb the value of existing bonds decreases. Also, the longer the maturity the bigger the decline will be. The technical term for maturity is "duration", which is defined as a measure of the sensitivity of the price of a fixed-income (bond) investment to a change in interest rates. 2) Credit Quality – Think of this like a FICO score with a 'AAA' bond rating being an 820 FICO, while a 'B'...
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Jan
15

Stop Awaiting the Fed

Stop Awaiting the Fed
The first quarter of the new year has brought us small positive returns in many of the U. S. and global indices, and more than the usual amount of anxiety along with them. Meanwhile, global markets are showing signs of life. If you were watching the markets day to day, you experienced a mild roller coaster, what trading professionals refer to as a sideways market. One day it was up, the next down, each day (or week) seeming to erase the gains or losses of the previous ones. The best explanation for this phenomenon is that investors are still looking over their shoulders at interest rates, waiting for bond yields to jump higher, making bonds more competitive with stocks and triggering an outflow from the stock market that could (so the reasoning goes) cause a bear market in U. S. equities. However, investors have been waiting for this shoe to drop for the better part of three years, and meanwhile, interest rates have drifted decidedly lower in the first quarter.This inter...
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Due to renewed State orders for shelter-in-place we will be modifying our office operations. We will be suspending services at our physical office for the public. However, we are available to you via web meeting (zoom), email and telephone (Phone lines have been forwarded to our personal cell phones) during regular business hours. We will be able to fully service all your investment needs with no interruption.

You may drop contribution checks at our office through the mail slot or they may be mailed directly to TD Ameritrade (address listed below). Please be sure to notate your account number on the check.

TD Ameritrade
PO BOX 650567
Dallas, TX 75265-0567

Rest assured that we will continue to monitor your investments and market conditions on an ongoing basis with no interruption. Should you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact us.

We will navigate this crisis as best we can, coming together and making shared sacrifices. We hope that we can help to slow down the effect of this virus together and solve this swiftly. We also wish everyone well and would like to extend our gratitude for your patience during these trying times. Continue to watch for updates from us.