The Two Sided Story of Auto Sales

Early reports show that auto sales will fall below expectations in July. Ford CEO Mark Fields noted that the industry is starting to face headwinds. He noted that he expects sales to continue to decline through 2017. The slowdown in sales isn’t surprising considering the US GDP hasn’t increased as much as hoped. The economy only inched forward by 1.2% during the second quarter. There isn’t only bad news though. Continue reading “The Two Sided Story of Auto Sales”

Is Company Ownership Stupid?

As you probably already know, when you purchase a share of stock you have bought ownership in that company. If you only buy a few shares your ownership percentage will be very small but you will own a piece of that company never the less. I recently ran across an interview of Mark Cuban by Entrepreneur magazine where Cuban stated that you shouldn’t invest at all. Continue reading “Is Company Ownership Stupid?”

Brick and Mortar Stores Continue to Suffer

More good news to go along with June jobs report, June retail sales went up 0.6% in June. Although May sales were revised down to only a 0.2% increase. In essence May was a terrible month and June was an awesome month. Combine the two and we get two average months. The reports could always be worse than average. But this article isn’t just about sales increasing again or another rant about wanting these numbers to be separated by what was spent by credit versus cash. Instead I want to look at the continued decline of brick and mortar sales. Continue reading “Brick and Mortar Stores Continue to Suffer”

Hide and Go Seek Quantitative Easing

As I mentioned in an earlier post, today kicks off earnings season. The predictions are that earnings will be negative for S&P 500 companies as a whole for the 5th straight quarter. The worst part of this news is that the S&P 500 index hasn’t seen five straight quarters of year over year declines since the Great Recession. Not great news for an economy that is supposed to be in a recovery. I have heard many analysts mention that they believe the last two quarters of the year will show a massive turnaround but who knows if this will actually happen. Continue reading “Hide and Go Seek Quantitative Easing”

Good News on the Job Front

After the terrible May jobs report many were speculating that it was a one time bump in the road. Now that the June job numbers are out that looks to be the case. 287,000 jobs were added in June verses the 38,000 that were added in May. The May numbers have actually been revised down to 11,000. That is not a bump in the road but rather a massive crater. Continue reading “Good News on the Job Front”

Is a Recession Coming Soon?

Short answers is maybe, long answer is it depends on who you ask. Deutsche Bank recently came out and said that the probability of a recession in the next 12 months has risen to 60%. On the other hand the New York federal reserve has come out and stated a recession is 8.1% likely in the next 12 months. The biggest issue right now is all of the contradictory opinions about the economy is causing havoc with peoples emotions. The volatility in the markets right now is a direct result of the uncertainty this news creates. There are many gloomy clouds on the horizon but no one can defiantly tells us what it all means. Continue reading “Is a Recession Coming Soon?”

Is Your Retirement Account Average?

A recent article from USA Today basically asked the question of this post. I was defiantly intrigued to read more. You often hear the magic number of one million dollars. Normally this is considered a goldilocks number. The number to shoot for in order to have a comfortable retirement. So does any age group on average actually have this amount saved? Continue reading “Is Your Retirement Account Average?”

Consumer Spending Continues to Rise

According to Reuters consumer spending increased by 0.4 percent in May and 1.1 percent in April. This strong consumer spending has led the Atlanta Federal Reserve to raise their second quarter spending growth expectations from 4.1 percent to 4.3 percent on an annual basis. Most would consider this good news since our economy is so heavily dependent on consumer spending. I have a major concern though. Continue reading “Consumer Spending Continues to Rise”

Passive vs Active Investments

According to Morningstar the trend is continuing as more and more people are moving their investments to passively managed funds from actively managed funds. In my opinion the reason is more than just lower fees. Humans have emotions, we panic, we get scared and we do dumb things because of it. Going with a passive fund not only lowers your fees but it takes away the risk of your fund manager making a bad decision. Over time it is hard to be perfect with every decision you make. Continue reading “Passive vs Active Investments”