Hindenburg Omen

Whatever Happened to the Hindenburg ? September was an excellent month for US stock market returns – the S&P 500 index was up 9.92% – the best September since 1939. October hasn’t been too bad either, with the S&P up over 3% for the month-to-date. Small company stocks have fared even better. We are constantly telling you not to focus on the short-term performance of the market, so why am I bringing it up now? Well, based on the Hindenburg Omen we were supposed to experience a “market meltdown” in the month of September. Jim… [read more]
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The Essential Problem

When we sit down with someone nearing retirement, we address what we refer to as “the essential problem” which is ensuring they do not run out of money before they run out of life. For the average 62 year old couple who does not smoke, at least one spouse will live to the age of 92. That means you need to plan for at least a thirty year retirement. This is one instance where being above average literally doesn’t pay. Every additional year that you live the cost of everything you need to buy increases.… [read more]
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Peeking Behind the Curtain

Peggy Noonan wrote an excellent article in the Wall Street Journal recently framing the coming November elections as a battle between, as she puts it, the enraged and the exhausted. Part of her argument is that much of the growing distaste for our elected officials on both sides of the aisle stems from the almost constant access to information about the goings on in the government. As Tennessee congresswoman Marsha Blackburn is quoted, “The more they (the public) know, the less they like Washington.” I won’t begin to suggest that I can sort out our… [read more]
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Too Much Information

When my husband was first diagnosed with cancer I immediately read everything I could on the subject so we could put together a plan to fight it. The information I found was not encouraging. Three out of ten Stage III melanoma patients do not live to five years, and forty percent of those who do have had a relapse of the disease. Interferon, the primary FDA approved treatment followed after surgery, boosts your survival chances by only 5 – 10%. I was overwhelmed. I gave myself a break from all the reading, because I realized… [read more]
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