Volatility gets a bum rap in the financial services industry. For the average investor, it’s synonymous with risk and you’ll often see the two terms used interchangeably. Nor is volatility’s reputation entirely unfounded.
Risk is defined as a probability or threat of damage, injury, liability, loss or any other negative occurrence that is caused by external or internal vulnerabilities that may be avoided through premature action.
It has been a while since the markets have had a meaningful correction. Over the last 3 years the only meaningful pull back was last fall when the S&P 500 dropped from 2.011 to 1,862; a little over 7% decline.
As an advisor I help people in many areas of their financial picture. One area that I have a strong focus on is debt and credit due to my additional activities as a mortgage agent.
We all want our investments to grow and help fund all the things we would like to do now and in our retirement. One investment we don’t always fully appreciate is the investment in doing our tax returns.
On any given day, which way the market is headed is anybody's guess. Historically, equity markets have gone up over the long term. Since 1956, the Toronto Stock Exchange Total Return Index for the top 300 stocks, which includes reinvested distributions, has increased 81-fold.
The price of oil declined almost 50% during 2014. The price decline has been a gain for consumers around the world and also a transfer of wealth from oil-producing regions to oil-consuming regions.
As the cold gets colder and bills pile up, those of us who help families going through separation and divorce get extremely busy.
Looking back at stock market history, most years were just as uneventful as the next even though each year was full of events, drama and intrigue. As they often do, stocks go up even in the face of scary headlines. 2014 was no different. In fact, stocks go up many more years than they go down. So let’s chalk 2014 up to just another year stocks went up.
There’s a fair amount of uncertainty in the markets today. Will China slow further or won’t it? Will the situation in Iraq escalate causing the price of oil to spike further? Are valuations too stretched after more than five years of a bull market? Where will interest rates be a year from now? Will corporate profit margins return to a more normalized rate from what appears to be an elevated level today?