Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Other Year End Musings

Dear Friends,

Happy Holidays!  We hope you all have the opportunity to spend time with family and friends this season and enjoy the craziness of life!

This year the market has given us all much to cheer about but lest our memories fade too quickly remember where we were one year ago at this time.  The markets were in a bit of a tailspin and from early November until Christmas Eve of last year proceeded to decline by nearly 20% (19.6% to be exact). Our view for 2019 was that the markets would recover from that rapid decline (the Federal Reserve certainly helped out by cutting interest rates early in January and then again, a couple of more times this year) and so the year has unfolded somewhat as expected.  Better economic and employment data coupled with increased consumer spending have provided additional fuel for the markets upward trajectory as well.

If you follow our radio program/podcast (which you can do by following this link),  you know at the start of every year we do our tongue in cheek exercise of a Fearless Forecast for what the markets will do for the coming calendar year.  This tradition started over three decades ago by my father-in-law Jack Nelson and it continues today.  We are on a bit of a lucky streak on our forecasting these days as this year will mark the fourth time in the past eight years where our forecast has been nearly spot on – plus/minus within 400 points of where the DOW finished the year at.  This year may turn out to be our most accurate yet – our prediction was a DOW at 28,400 by year end and yesterday the DOW closed at 28,239.  Needless to say – stay tuned as there are still a few more days left in 2019!  We will look to recap the numbers on our program that will air on December 29.  As for the other four years of those past eight – well, suffice it to say that we were less than accurate in our forecasting.  This underscores the reason why we don’t time the market!!!

Looking ahead to next year, well, you’ll have to wait for our December 29 radio program/podcast for the official Fearless Forecast but basically, we believe the current positive economic trends will carry into 2020.  Beware though the uncertainty of election years can produce some heightened volatility (that plus China trade, North Korea, Brexit – there’s always a host of headline events that provide distraction).

What we do know about 2020 is that we have a very exciting line up of client meetings ahead. In a bit of a change, for the first time in a number of years, we are bringing in an independent nationally known speaker for our first client meeting on January 29.  Dr. Sean Snaith, Director of the Institute for Economic Forecasting at UCF, will be our featured speaker for a dinner session.  Sean is a nationally recognized economist in the field of business and economic forecasting and has won multiple awards for the accuracy of his forecasts, his research and his teaching.  He is a highly sought after speaker and is frequently interviewed in international, national and regional media.  We are confident he will have much to say about 2020 and beyond!

After that, our next client meeting will be another dinner session on March 26 and feature a national speaker from the American Funds.  Looking further ahead we are excited about returning to Quantum Leap Winery for our annual client appreciation event.  Remember it is the identical event on both nights so look for a formal invitation and response card in your mail in late March in order to secure your first choice of date.

Lastly, thank you!  Our business continues to grow thanks to your continued confidence, loyalty and referrals.  We appreciate you all so much!

Enjoy the holiday season!