Groping For a Low… Again

The streak was broken! Whether you look at the S&P 500 or the NASDAQ 100, we no longer have to hear about either index being up X straight Mondays. It was certainly an odd phenomena. And my cursory view of Fridays didn’t reveal any “sign of relief” type rally where Thursday and/or Fridays were sold ahead of the weekend. I am sure someone a lot smarter than me can probably find some rationale. The S&P 500 fell below 4200 on […]   Read More
Date: October 25, 2023

Smart Social Security Facts: Your Guide to Tax Planning for 2024

Most people we are talking to about their plans for a comfortable, secure retirement have serious concerns about inflation and a potential recession in 2024. When they added the complexities of Social Security’s eligibility requirements, planning for the future became even more complicated. They want to make the right decisions to maximize their after-tax lifetime benefits.   Social Security may or may not produce a meaningful monthly income for you. But, at a minimum, it extends the life of your other […]   Read More
Date: October 23, 2023

Ugly Friday For The Bulls But It IS Monday – Scenario Building For Q4

Friday was an ugly day for the bulls, certainly price-wise. The NASDAQ played downside catch up from what has been an outperforming position. Interestingly, the number of stocks advancing versus declining was the strongest of the past three days. I added a scenario which I thought was almost dead. It’s in light blue below and quickly drawn in. The S&P 500 has some more downside this week to breach the October lows and bottom somewhere around 4200. 4200 is not […]   Read More
Date: October 22, 2023

Short-Term Turns Down – Q4 Studies Still Point Higher

In today’s blog I am going to share some very short-term comments first and then expand those to October and Q4 after the two charts I post. The stock market did not make it back up to the 4400 level I discussed earlier in the week and last week. Rather, it turned south and now appears to be heading towards the 4200 area which coincides with where the decline stopped earlier this month as well as where the popular average […]   Read More
Date: October 20, 2023

Medicare, Social Security and a Drop in Stock Market Risk

Let’s start with some general financial planning tidbits. First, Medicare open enrollment started on October 16th and goes through December 7th. If you are 65 or soon to be 65 or want to change plans, this is for you. Do not delay! This is your annual opportunity. Second, the Social Security Administration just announced that the cost of living adjustment (COLA) for 2024 will be 3.2%. That means your gross social security benefit will rise by 3.2% in 2024. As […]   Read More
Date: October 18, 2023

More Evidence of The Bottom

As you know the time and price targets for a bottom were met. The window for a bottom opened a few weeks ago and it’s hard to argue that a low has not been seen. The only push back the bears can offer is whether or not it was the bottom for Q4. The bears will say it wasn’t while the bulls will say it was. I added a third blue line to the very familiar chart below. It’s highest […]   Read More
Date: October 16, 2023

Better Be Watching The Dollar

With Wednesday’s hotter than expected PPI, the market made it three straight negative news pieces that resulted in a higher stock market. On Thursday, we had a hotter Consumer Price Index (CPI) that ended the streak. While the CPI put a damper on prices it was really the results of the day’s Treasury auction that roiled markets, at least for a few hours. It was yet another auction with less enthusiasm than expected resulting in higher yields. The chart below […]   Read More
Date: October 13, 2023

The Most Bullish Thing a Market Can Do

If you’re keeping score at home, I think we now have three straight pieces of negative news where the stock market reacted positively. First, last Friday’s employment report was very strong which means a more vigilant Fed. Stocks staged a massive reversal to the upside. Then we had the unspeakable Hamas invasion of Israel. Stocks opened sharply lower and closed higher. This morning, the Producer Price Index came in hotter than expected (higher inflation) and markets look to open higher. […]   Read More
Date: October 11, 2023

Big Gains on Friday – Bell Ringing?

The horrific and barbaric events of the weekend in Israel by Hamas will certainly overshadow the markets’ short-term trends. I was surprised that Israel’s stock market did not close down more than the 7% it did on Sunday. Our market isn’t even indicating a give back of the big gains on Friday. And FYI, the bond market is closed for the federal holiday today. On Friday the government released employment data for September. Job growth was well beyond expectations, but […]   Read More
Date: October 9, 2023

Confident Retirement Planning in 2024: Overcoming Market Uncertainties

In a climate of rising volatility and speculation about a looming recession in 2024, charting your path to retirement might feel like steering a ship through stormy waters. You’ve worked hard to accumulate a substantial retirement nest egg as a professional, business owner, or executive. Now, you need a comprehensive retirement plan to protect your wealth during your 30+ years of retirement and document how you want your assets distributed to family members. In the short run, you need a […]   Read More
Date: October 9, 2023

Still Waiting For The Bottom to Line Up

Thank you to those who attended last night webinar where we discussed the events of Q3, reviewed performance of our strategies and took a sneak peak at Q4. The stock market surely is taking its time getting to wherever it is going. Both time and price windows are open, but the indices have calmed over the past few days. That’s not typically the behavior seen if the ultimate bottom was just hammered in. So, in all likelihood, there should be […]   Read More
Date: October 6, 2023

Something Breaking in The Markets – Still in The Zone & Getting Closer

Tuesday was not a pretty day in the markets, but it was really just more of the same. Bonds collapsed which means yields rose. Stocks fell. The dollar rallied. Rinse and repeat since mid-July. I can’t say it has been fun without many intervening rallies, but it also has not been disastrous, at least not yet. Stocks and risk assets remain under pressure to state the obvious. Both time and price are and have been in my zone for a […]   Read More
Date: October 4, 2023

New Week, Month & Quarter – Bulls Have The Edge to Start

Friday ended the week, month and quarter. And it was definitely a tale of two halves, much like Q1 with early strength and later weakness. And you already know that both time and have price have opened the window for a stock market bottom. If all goes according to plan, the low we see should create an opportunity for a rally into January and it could be significant. And by the way, for all those who were skeptical about my […]   Read More
Date: October 2, 2023

Is “A” Bottom or “THE” Bottom? The Window is Open

Monday was the first time in a month where some signs popped up of at least a short-term rally beginning. The bears waited all of one day to squash that notion as Tuesday was another win for the bears. Wednesday looked even better than Monday in terms of the market groping for a little low. We shall see what happens today. The most beaten down, ugliest indices, small and mid caps, have been hanging in this week. Here is the […]   Read More
Date: September 28, 2023

Window For a Bottom Opens – VIX Needs to Spike

After being off for Yom Kippur yesterday, it feels like a Monday today. Markets behaved poorly to end last week, but hung in okay on Monday against another spike in long-term interest rates. Stocks are under pressure in the pre-market today. They need to close in the upper half of their range today to indicate at least a very short-term rally has begun. As I discussed last week, the window for a stock market low is now open as the […]   Read More
Date: September 26, 2023

Retirement Amid 2024 Uncertainties: Planning Ahead with Confidence

2024 could be very challenging, with the potential for a recession during an election year. In other words, several uncertainties could increase market volatility. This uncertainty is compounded if you plan to retire in 2024 or recently retire. You may have a lot of questions or concerns about the future and what you can do to minimize certain risks:    Should I retire in 2024? Have I saved enough for 30 years of retirement? How will market volatility affect my plans? […]   Read More
Date: September 25, 2023

Pullback Accelerates

First, lets’ start off with the Fed model which was woefully wrong on Wednesday, calling for a post-2pm rally. When markets don’t do what they’re supposed to do, they often accelerate in the opposite direction which is what we saw on Thursday. The two-day decline was real, lopping 2-4% off of the major stock market indices. Below is the S&P 500. At the close it met my minimum downside target of breaching the August low. You can see the two […]   Read More
Date: September 22, 2023

Fed Stands Pat – Stocks Should Rally

It’s Fed day and an uneventful one at that. Interest rates will not be going up today. That’s what everyone expects and what we will hear at 2pm. Before that the model says plus or minus 0.50% in the stock market and then the usual bigger moves after the Fed news breaks. With the recent weakness, the model says the bulls have the upper hand today. I also do not think the Fed will say anything about a pause for […]   Read More
Date: September 20, 2023

Dreaming of Retirement? Here’s What $3 Million Can Get You

Let’s say you’ve tucked away $3 million for your retirement years in Hartford or New Haven, Connecticut. It might sound like a large amount, but in today’s world of economic uncertainty, inflation, and rising longevity, it’s important to know the real purchasing power of your savings.  In this blog, we’ll explore how viable it is to retire with $3 million in savings and how you can effectively manage these assets with comprehensive retirement planning. Let’s dive in. 1. Retirement Spending […]   Read More
Date: September 18, 2023

The Weakest Week of the Weakest Month Already in Pullback Mode

And so begins the weakest week of the weakest month of the year. In fact, for all of September’s ominous tones, you can attribute more than 100% of the negativity to this week. (hat tip to my friend Rob Hanna of Quantifiable Edges) Now, before you start thinking about crashes and collapses, let’s remember that we are talking about an average, not a certainty. And last Friday was down decently against the backdrop of the auto strike and one of […]   Read More
Date: September 18, 2023