29 April Financial Planning and Market Update
Dear Friends and Clients,
I’m eager to share the current market update, hot off the press, by one of the most respected analysts in the business, Daken Vanderburg, the Head of Investments for Mass Mutual’s Wealth Management division. In it he addresses an area of great confusion, exaggeration, and concern, the slumping oil markets. We hear on the news every day that these problems are weighing heavily on investors and serving as a headwind on a market struggling for direction. However, it’s clear that the direction it has been heading in, in spite of the oil troubles, and a slowing but still continuing pandemic crisis, is up, up, and away! The equity markets, while still down by as much as 17% from previous highs, have risen more than 25% since it hit bottom a few weeks ago, when it was down by over 33%. This is the fastest increase in value of the market of its kind in history. Investors now seem to be choosing to listen to the music of the optimists who see the slowing growth rate, and the stirrings of “back to business” plans (and fantasies) rather than the not yet tabulated economic costs of this mess in terms of unemployment, bankruptcies, profit declines, etc.
With this backdrop, we’re reminded every day that the stock market is forward looking. Rather than reflecting some grim current realities, it looks ahead and sees a future when some sort of normalcy is restored, profits grow rather than decline, people return to work, stores and offices and factories reopen – it is betting that things are going to improve in significant ways. When? No one knows, but it is apparently enough, in this most peculiar moment, to believe in spring and that it will eventually get there. And it is heartening, right, that there is so much apparent optimism out there. It makes me feel better! But do I believe it all? Not really, not yet. I believe that there could well be other shoes to drop (I’m imagining horse, not a centipede!) and other unexpected crisis to navigate before we have any real sense of what the other side of this looks like. But it does give me hope that the general advice of the investment community – to not panic, not sell into a swoon, stay the course, work the plan – has so far been correct. Those who sold at the bottom (so far) have just missed a 25% rally. If there ever was an object lesson in not trying to time the market or react to daily news or market movements, we’ve just had it.
So enjoy Daken’s commentary, and stay in touch. While in many ways this is the worst of times, it is the best of times for reviewing or creating your financial plan. We are busier than we have ever been and have been adding advisory and administrative capacity to keep up with the demand. We are accepting new clients and encourage you to think about talking with us about planning if you haven’t already done so. We would also appreciate your referrals and encourage you to suggest to others you know that they consider the benefits of doing the kind of comprehensive planning with us that will help them through what remains of this crisis, and prepare for a brighter future by preparing for the next – there will always be a next. As always, we are pleased to offer complementary consultations with a member of our team.
Stay Well and Happy May Day - Solidarity Forever!
Allen Davis for the DFG Team
Allen J. Davis, CFP® ChFC
Financial Planner and Advisor
Davis Financial Group, LLC
10 Bay Road, Hadley, MA 01035
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We wish you good health and look forward to hearing from you soon.
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