I hope your 2019 is off to a great start. I know I am getting older when the first quarter is almost over, and I still remember Christmas as if it was yesterday. At the same time, I am getting tired of looking out my office window and seeing the beautiful “almost” spring weather we are having in Arizona without myself outdoors to enjoy it. I finally could not take it and closed the blinds yesterday.
With the strong volatility we experienced in the 4th quarter, and now having the ability of hindsight, the equity markets seemed to have started 2019 with a reversal of the declines we experienced in late 2018. They appeared to have “bounced” starting in January and have been on a positive trajectory since. While the positive momentum has not covered the losses that occurred for many of you yet, the markets appear to be in striking distance if things continue. As discussed last month, we would have expected the “Government Shutdown” to continue the declines into the 1st Quarter of 2019. However, that certainly has not been the case. One of the conference calls I was on last month commented that the American people have become so disillusioned with our elected politicians, that the uncertainty of a “Government Shutdown” in the past would have continued the volatility. Yet in 2019, it has been a non-event. Why? Because “we the people” did not expect Washington to come to an agreement on funding the government in a short period of time and therefore, “The Shutdown” was expected, and thus, causing no market uncertainty. Interesting. I pray this trend continues with what could be on the horizon.
There are some things we are watching closely. The United States has not signed a trade agreement with China. Although it is expected soon there is no agreement today. The Job’s Report came out a few weeks ago and new jobs starts fell below the expectations. This created a short-term market decline that lasted about 5 days. The “smoking gun” is what may be in the Mueller Report. From all accounts, the investigations are wrapping up and expected to be released to the Attorney General soon. Assuming it has not already been provided. The House this week voted 420 – 0 to make the report public. The President’s close advisors, Cohen and Manafort, have already received jail sentences and Roger Stone appears to be headed for a similar fate. It is hard to believe that The Report will not have something incriminating against our President, based upon what is going on with his “inner circle”. If there is and depending on the severity of that evidence, will the possible impeachment process begin, even if not concluded? Nancy Pelosi has come out and stated our President is not “worth” impeaching. What is THE answer? Who knows? However, I do know the market does not like uncertainty of any kind and if this “process” gains momentum, what could that do to the markets in general? Part of me is hoping that the political disillusionment which made the “Government Shutdown” a trivial event, may be tested. I wish they would make The Report public soon, so one way or the other, things can be set in motion or not.
With the equity markets in positive territory for the year thus far, I wanted to share with you the attached piece we came across from Putnam Investments. This piece illustrates the power of being in the market on a specific number of days. Not months, nor years, but literally days and illustrates the pure power of missing those investment days over the last 15 years. What surprised me, is over that 5,475 days (365 days per year x 15 years) your investment goes down by almost 50% by missing the best 10 trading days. It also proves it is best to be invested in the market through these cycles of time than out. Keep in mind, our strategic position is to begin the process of dialing back your risk 3 – 5 years prior to your goal event. Let us know if you have any question on this or you would like to discuss this further.
Lastly, wanted to share with you some things that are happening at Legacy Wealth Alliance. Last year, we started what we call our Travel Board. We asked many of you, when you travel, to drop us a postcard or provide us a picture. You all have been so great in sending us spectacular cards and pictures from all over the nation and globe. Our board looks like a collage, with every piece of cork completely covered. Our goal is to get another board that we hope to fill this year. We are also going to expand our board continuing with travel, to pictures of graduations, weddings, new purchases like cars, boats, homes, remodels, etc. We know how hard you all work to prepare for your life events (new homes, trips, college graduation, weddings, retirement, etc.). If we could give all of you a medals or trophies for your achievements, we would. What is most important for us is seeing you accomplish, enjoy, and live what was once “We would like to” to now “We are”. In seeing the joy and pride in your faces in those moments or getting postcards from the destinations you told us were your first stops, bring true meaning to our work and gives us the same joy and pride knowing, you did it. For those of you that have provided us these items for our board, thank you and keep them coming. For those of you that haven’t yet, we welcome you to participate with us. And the next time you are in, ask us, we will happily share this board with you.
I also wanted to share with you we are close to brining on some new members to our team. Thanks to your generosity and continued patronage, we are growing, and growth requires new talent to our team. Less I stop burning Pattie just out and start burning her down. Thank you too for those of you that provided us people that you knew to be included in our hiring process. We are truly grateful for your introductions. I hope to introduce you to those new individuals soon. We are humbly aware that this growth would not be possible without you. We are so appreciative to have you, your families, and business be part of Legacy Wealth Alliance. If there is ever more, we can do to deepen our relationship, please feel free to let us know how. We look forward to many more years together building and protecting your wealth.