Though few believe government shouldn't be helping its citizens and the economy during this crisis, some of our clients have expressed concerns about our rising national debt. Below is the emailed question and my answer concerning his debt question.
The past couple of weeks have been a wild ride. There is fear out there; people are starting to feel sick. If this person is you - it is OK to feel that way. This is what comes with volatility and massive sell-offs. We've been through these times before and none of them have felt good. Naturally clients will ask - what do we do? Here are some of my personal takes on the market and current environment to address that question:
With the coronavirus spreading panic and a market selloff over the last week, some are wondering how we should position our portfolios in light of a potential epidemic. As is usual under such circumstances, I prefer to take an historical perspective. Though history doesn't repeat itself, it certainly does rhyme and may give us a sound guide of how to proceed going forward. As such, I've attached a chart below which illustrates how the market has responded during the onset of other infectious diseases including SARS, Ebola and Avian Flu among others. Though such epidemics may certainly have an impact on the broader economy and market over the short term, you'll notice that over longer periods of time, the stock market has been "immune" to broader damaging effects.
In the final days leading up to Christmas, while most of us have been buying presents, baking cookies, and mentally preparing to spend time with our in-laws, Congress has been busy. The recent passage of the SECURE Act has some major implications for retirement and financial planning. We've included some of the most important changes below. Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.
Though I thought long and hard during many periods of my life about a calling to the priesthood, I would never feel comfortable building my business by using religion as a marketing plan. For one, I understand that I am an imperfect man incapable of living up to perfect ideals. I wouldn't want my clients and friends to entrust their assets to our firm with an expectation that I will not make mistakes in my life and potentially become disillusioned by my missteps. Secondly, I don't know if God wants us to be financially successful or not. The ideals I've studied for endeavoring to live a noble life have little connection with monetary things and many, like St. Francis and Mother Teresa, have lived with little worldly possessions while leaving a remarkable legacy. Faith, hope and charity require a belief in the Divine while the cardinal virtues of prudence, temperance, fortitude, and justice may be well exemplified by non-believers alike.