Nine Key Things Next President Should Do To Fix The Economy: Brookings

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15I hope you had a great weekend! This painful presidential campaign is almost over!

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “Nine Key Things Next President Should Do To Fix The Economy: Brookings” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of ThinkAdvisor. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share enlightening, useful information with you each week. If you are short on time, make sure you review each of the nine points to see if any are of interest.

Our next President will face many challenges. This piece focuses on those related to the economy and references an important study from the Brookings Institution.

Have a wonderful week!

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Nine Key Things Next President Should Do To Fix The Economy: Brookings

By Bernice Napach, ThinkAdvisor

Although the economy hasn’t always been the focus of the current vicious and protracted presidential campaign, it will be among the most important challenges facing the next president.

With that in mind, the liberal-leaning Brookings Institution has issued a series of reports on issues related to the economy the next president will face, including recommended solutions. We’ve consolidated them into nine issues, ranging from fixing crumbling infrastructure to creating jobs for the poor and middle class, reforming health care and addressing the swelling levels of college debt. [Read more…]

We’re In Danger Of Poisoning America’s Economic Secret Sauce

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15

I hope you had a great weekend! The leaves are starting to fall from the trees around my house.

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “We’re In Danger Of Poisoning America’s Economic Secret Sauce” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of John Manzella. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share informative and relevant information with you each week. This is a short piece I believe everyone can read in less than 60 seconds.

A number of economists feel that we may be at an economic inflection point. Are we at risk of destroying the economic goose that lays the golden eggs? The author thinks that we may be.

Have a wonderful week!

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We’re In Danger Of Poisoning America’s Economic Secret Sauce

By John Manzella

After dozens of speaking engagements in Mexico in the early 1990s, I found that many in the audience either had an American passport or badly wanted one.

After I crossed through Check Point Charlie from West Berlin to East Berlin in March 1990, I was told by countless East Germans of their wish to move to the United States to seek a better life.

And when in China, I’m often told by students, workers and business people alike of their desire to permanently move here.

What is it about the United States that draws the world’s brightest and least fortunate? And can it continue?

America’s economic secret sauce

[Read more…]

Four Reasons U.S. Doomsayers Are Wrong

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15I hope you had a great weekend! Are you staying cool?

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “Four Reasons U.S. Doomsayers Are Wrong” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of ThinkAdvisor. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. If you are short on time, make sure you take a look at each heading.

Donald Trump talks a lot about making America great again and while our country has considerable room for improvement, we still lead the world in many areas. Those of you who are fortunate enough to be able to travel abroad know how favorably America compares to the rest of the world. The author of this week’s piece reminds us of some of America’s most important attributes.

Have a wonderful week!

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Four Reasons U.S. Doomsayers Are Wrong

By Gil Weinreich, appearing in ThinkAdvisor

Anxiety about U.S. decline is not merely the province of America’s chattering class; surveys of the population reflect a widespread pessimism. A recent Associated Press survey shows that a majority of respondents expect an erosion in the American way of life over the coming decades, while an extensive separate AP survey shows that less than a quarter of Americans expect improving conditions.

Count Joel Kurtzman among that diminutive remnant of optimists. A senior fellow at the Milken Institute, an economic think tank based in Santa Monica, Calif., and a board member of the SEI Center for Advanced Management at the Wharton School, Kurtzman blames today’s “raucous and wrongheaded political debate” for misjudging the enormous vitality America is about to unleash.

His new book entitled Unleashing the Second American Century: Four Forces for Economic Dominance, and its data-filled contents might induce declinists to reconsider their narrative of doom. Following is a look at the four forces. [Read more…]

How Low Could We Go? Negative Interest Rates Explained

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15I hope you had a great weekend! Spring is definitely here!

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “How Low Could We Go? Negative Interest Rates Explained” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of Schwab. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. This is a short piece I believe everyone can read in less than 60 seconds.

You probably have heard a lot about negative interest rates and wondered why anyone would invest in something that guarantees a loss. This short piece does a nice job explaining negative interest rates and whether we might see them in the U.S.

Have a wonderful week!

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How Low Could We Go? Negative Interest Rates Explained

From Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

One of the first times negative interest rates appeared on the radar for many investors was in 2012, when the Danish National Bank pushed its deposit rate below zero. It seemed like an outlier event at the time, but since then, central banks in the European Union, Sweden, Switzerland and Japan have sold trillions of dollars of debt offering below-zero interest rates.

With investors and banks buying this government debt at a nearly guaranteed loss, it seems like the world is turning upside down. It’s a trend that’s unprecedented, says Kathy Jones, senior vice president and chief fixed income strategist at the Schwab Center for Financial Research.

To understand the current global wave of negative rates — and whether it’s likely that the U.S. would embrace them — it helps to examine both their theoretical appeal and how they’re actually playing out in real life.

The intended upside of negative rates

[Read more…]

Market Volatility: What You Need To Know

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15I hope you had a great Valentine’s weekend.

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “Market Volatility: What You Need To Know” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of Schwab. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. If you are short on time, make sure to review the major headings.

We have begun 2016 with tremendous market volatility. Find out why below from the experts at Schwab.

Have a wonderful week!

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Market Volatility: What You Need To Know

By Schwab Center for Financial Research

Key points

  • Markets have been unusually volatile so far in 2016, with plunging oil prices, slowing growth in China, steep declines in overseas equity markets, fragility in the high-yield bond market and concerns about the Federal Reserve all contributing to uncertainty.
  • While we have experienced a 10% U.S. stock market correction twice in the past year — and some pockets of the equity market (for instance, the NASDAQ) have done worse — we do not expect the current  correction to turn into a broad-based bear market.
  • Investors should review their portfolios to make sure they still reflect their target asset allocations and goals. They should also resist the urge to buy and sell based solely on recent market movements, as it could hobble their performance over time.

[Read more…]

Five Global Trends That Investors Should Watch

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15
I hope you had a great weekend. The holidays are almost here!

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “Five Global Trends That Investors Should Watch” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of Schwab. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. This is a short piece I believe everyone can read in less than 60 seconds.

World trends may impact your investing strategy more than trends here in the U.S. As our world becomes more integrated, what happens abroad becomes much more relevant. Outlined below are five major global trends that the experts at Schwab feel everyone should keep in mind.

Have a wonderful week!

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Five Global Trends That Investors Should Watch

From Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

Demographic changes around the world are creating new opportunities for investors. Consider your portfolio in light of these global trends, and you may want to widen your horizons: [Read more…]

Four Signs A Recession Is Nowhere Near

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15
Welcome to another warm summer week. You may want to store these days in your memory. Winter will be here sooner than you think!

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “Four Signs A Recession Is Nowhere Near” (presented below) comes to you from LPL Financial. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. This is a short piece that I believe everyone can finish in less than 60 seconds.

Are there storm clouds on the economic horizon? Not according to LPL Financial. Read why they believe the U.S. economy will continue to remain recession-free.

Have a wonderful week!

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Four Signs A Recession Is Nowhere Near

After a long winter put a damper on the U.S. economy in the first quarter, job growth is finally heating up. “Spring arrived, and fortunately, so did the economic snapback,” said LPL Financial Research in its midyear outlook report, released earlier this week.

Indeed, some 288,000 jobs were added in June, the Labor Department reported, and the unemployment rate fell to 6.1%. The markets, of course, reacted favorably to the latest job news.

Analysts at LPL Financial (LPLA) say we’ve reached a moment of truth: “If the economic data continued to weaken, it would mean that something was more deeply wrong with the economy than merely the weather. If spring led to a rebound, then it meant the weakness in the first quarter was weather related, and our forecast for a breakout in the economy to a faster pace of growth was still on track.” [Read more…]

The Budget Deficit’s Plunge

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15
Summer is almost over!

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “The Budget Deficit’s Plunge” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of Schwab Research. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. If you would like to keep your time spent with this piece to around the promised minute, please page down and review each of the Key points.

Did you know that the Federal government ran a $117 billion budget surplus in June? How about the fact that the Federal government’s budget deficit has been cut in half? Not hearing any of this good news through the media? Check out the facts below from Schwab Research.

I hope you have a wonderful week!

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The Budget Deficit’s Plunge

By: Liz Ann Sonders, Chief Investment Strategist, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

Key points

  • The budget deficit has been cut by more than half…from over 10% of GDP to less than 5% today.
  • June saw a budget surplus!
  • The health of the private sector (given its deleveraging since 2007) more than offsets the drag from public sector deleveraging.

Here is a story still under-told. The US federal budget deficit is plunging. It’s been in a steady decline for over four years; but the pace at which it’s improving has really picked up in the past year, particularly last month. About two-thirds of the improvement has come from the spending side, with the remainder on the revenue (tax receipts) side.

Deficit’s been cut in half

Ned Davis Research put together a great update on the trends underlying the deficit last month and I have filled in the blanks now that we have June’s readings. Before I get to the details, it’s notable that the government ran a $117 billion surplus in June. Many commentators have dismissed this reading because of large profits from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. But those accounted for only $66 billion; which means even excluding that figure, we’re still looking at a surplus of $51 billion.

[Read more…]

Disconnect — Why Stocks And The Economy Often Move In Opposite Directions

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MMM Newsletter and Website Header 10.2.15
Welcome to summer!

LRPC’s Monday Morning Minute for this week, “Disconnect — Why Stocks And The Economy Often Move In Opposite Directions” (presented below) comes to you courtesy of Schwab Research. As an independent, objective Registered Investment Advisory firm, Lawton Retirement Plan Consultants, LLC has access to research from many sources. Be assured that I will share the most relevant information with you each week. If you would like to keep your time spent with this piece to around the promised minute, please page down and review the “Key points” section.

Investors often wonder why the equity markets occasionally fall on the release of good economic data or rise when seemingly bad economic news is revealed.  This piece outlines some of the reasons why these events occur.

Have a wonderful week!
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Disconnect — Why Stocks And The Economy Often Move In Opposite Directions

By:  Liz Ann Sonders, Senior Vice President, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

Key points

  • Many investors are flummoxed by the apparent disconnect between the performance of the economy and the stock market.
  • In reality, not only do stocks typically lead the economy; the two can often diverge in the short term.
  • Investors need to understand all of the drivers of stock-market performance.

The connection between the stock market and the economy seems obvious. If the latter is performing well, the former should follow. In reality, not only is the opposite typically true—stocks lead the economy—but the two can often appear to be completely disconnected.

[Read more…]