Interest Rates Are Up Again—So What?

April 24, 2018

Normally, I don’t spend my time watching the markets move. But this morning, I did have one chart open: the interest rate on the U.S. Treasury 10-year. In the past couple of days, the rate has risen. The question is, will it actually get to 3 percent? If so, what will that mean?

Continue reading → Leave a comment

Monday Update: Retail Sales Rebound

April 23, 2018

Last week’s reports gave us a look at pretty much the entire economy, including consumer spending, the housing market, and industrial production and manufacturing. In the week ahead, we’ll see data on consumer confidence, durable goods, and gross domestic product growth.

Continue reading → Leave a comment

A Look at Confidence—the Final Indicator of Economic Risk

April 20, 2018

Today’s post will conclude this week’s discussion on the major economic risk indicators I follow. After looking at interest rates and jobs, we will close with a discussion of confidence, both consumer and business.

Continue reading → Leave a comment

A Look at Employment—the Next Best Indicator of Economic Risk

April 19, 2018

As a follow-up to yesterday’s look at the yield curve, today we will review employment, another indicator that does a good job of signaling economic risk. The reason employment works as an indicator is simple: More than 70 percent of the economy is made up of consumer spending, and the vast majority of that spending comes from wage income—which is to say, from jobs. No jobs? No spending. No spending? No economy. It really is that simple.

Continue reading → Leave a comment

A Look at the Yield Curve—the Best Indicator of Economic Risk

April 18, 2018

One of the key indicators I look at when evaluating economic and market risks is the yield curve, which is a fancy name for how interest rates for different time periods vary. You would expect the rate an investor needs for a 10-year loan, for example, to be different from what she needs for a 3-month—or 30-year—loan. And, by and large, that is the case. Exactly how different the rates are, however, can change quite a bit, and those changes can tell us a lot about the economy.

Continue reading → Leave a comment

What Higher Market Volatility Means for Your Portfolio

April 17, 2018

One of the big themes so far this year has been the return of volatility to the stock market. After a very calm 2017, markets have gotten much more turbulent in 2018. One way to quantify this is to look at daily movements. In 2018 (through April 9), the S&P 500 had an intraday swing of 2 percent or more on 13 days. The day-to-day price movements, measured at the close, have been more than ±2 percent on eight days. Neither of those happened in 2017, at all. There clearly has been an increase in volatility, and in a big way.

Continue reading → Leave a comment

Monday Update: Inflation on the Rise

April 16, 2018

Last week, the news was largely about inflation, with producer and consumer prices leading the way. The week ahead will be a busy one for economic news. Reports will give us a look at consumer spending, the housing market, and industrial production and manufacturing. In other words, we’ll get an update on the entire economy.

Continue reading → Leave a comment
5 Ways to Affiliate
Commonwealth Independent Advisor

Hot Topics

Have a Question?

New Call-to-action

Conversations

Subscribe via E-mail

Subscribe

Disclosure

The information on this website is intended for informational/educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment advice, a solicitation, or a recommendation to buy or sell any security or investment product. Please contact your financial professional for more information specific to your situation.

Certain sections of this commentary contain forward-looking statements that are based on our reasonable expectations, estimates, projections, and assumptions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve certain risks and uncertainties, which are difficult to predict. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Diversification does not assure a profit or protect against loss in declining markets.

The S&P 500 Index is a broad-based measurement of changes in stock market conditions based on the average performance of 500 widely held common stocks. All indices are unmanaged and investors cannot invest directly into an index.

The MSCI EAFE Index (Europe, Australasia, Far East) is a free float‐adjusted market capitalization index that is designed to measure the equity market performance of developed markets, excluding the U.S. and Canada. The MSCI EAFE Index consists of 21 developed market country indices.  

Third party links are provided to you as a courtesy. We make no representation as to the completeness or accuracy of information provided at these websites. Information on such sites, including third party links contained within, should not be construed as an endorsement or adoption by Commonwealth of any kind. You should consult with a financial advisor regarding your specific situation.

Member FINRASIPC

Please review our Terms of Use

Commonwealth Financial Network®