Category: Personal Financial Management

Personal Financial Management

Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through January 6th

US stocks got off to a strong start to the year ending at record highs on optimism about global growth. The S&P 500 rose 2.6% and the Dow rose above 25,000 to gain 2.3% for the week. Internationally, Europe rose 2.1% and Japan posted a new 26 year high surging 4.2% for the week. The yield on the 10 year Treasury rose from 2.40% to 2.49%.  Article

Hiring remained solid in the last month of 2017 with 148,000 jobs added. While the number fell below expectations and was below the pace of earlier months, the unemployment rate has held at a 17 year low of 4.1%. Wage growth remained at 2.5%. Article

Auto sales had their first annual sales drop since the financial crisis dropping 1.8% in 2017, but firms are still posting strong profits and the industry posted over 17 million vehicles sold for the third straight year.

In minutes released from the Fed’s December meeting Fed Governors weighed whether tax cuts would require the Fed to raise rates more aggressively and officials expressed confidence in the strength of the economy.

BP announced it would take a $1.5 billion accounting charge related to the new tax rules joining Goldman Sachs who announced a $5 billion charge.

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Raffa Wealth Management is an independent investment advisor providing nonprofit organizations, high net-worth investors, and qualified retirement plans with a full range of investment consulting services. We were established to fill the need for transparency, clarity, and vision in the professional management of investment assets. Visit us at www.raffawealth.com

How Does the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Impact You?

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (H.R. 1) has been approved by Congress and signed by President Trump. After a last-minute procedural glitch that required the Senate to vote first on the final bill, the most sweeping change to the U.S. tax code in decades cleared the Senate, 51 to 48, in the early morning hours of December 20, followed by House approval, 224 to 201, later the same day. President Trump signed the bill into law at the White House on December 22, 2017.

How Does the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Impact You?Read more

Financial News and Portfolio Management Discussion through December 30th

US Stocks edged down over the final trading week of the year. The S&P 500 fell 0.4% and the Dow ticked down 0.1%. International stocks edged down as well with Europe declining 0.3% and Japan fell 0.6%. The yield on the 10 year Treasury finished at 2.40% down from 2.48% from the previous week. Oil prices ended the year at their highest level since June 2015 at $60.42 a barrel. Oil inventories have correspondingly fallen to their lowest levels since October 2015.  Article

Holiday shopping from Nov 1st through Christmas Eve rose 4.9% this year well outpacing expectations. It was the best sales pace since 2011.

Initial jobless claims held near record lows.

About

Raffa Wealth Management is an independent investment advisor providing nonprofit organizations, high net-worth investors, and qualified retirement plans with a full range of investment consulting services. We were established to fill the need for transparency, clarity, and vision in the professional management of investment assets. Visit us at www.raffawealth.com