Blog

What’s on our mind? You can read about it in our blog. Whether it’s ideas from the industry or emerging trends, you can read about it here. And once in a while, we may throw in a movie review or some other surprise. So keep checking in. We’re glad to have you reading along.

Monday, December 9, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Key Wall Street benchmarks were up and down last week – or rather down and then up. A Tuesday retreat was offset by a Friday rally spurred by the Department of Labor’s November jobs report. While the S&P 500...

Monday, December 2, 2019

The Week on Wall Street As November wrapped up, U.S. equity benchmarks advanced. Stocks were again aided by a sense of optimism that a preliminary U.S.-China trade deal could be near. For the week, the Nasdaq Composite added 1.87%;...

Monday, November 25, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks declined last week as mixed signals emerged about the progress of U.S.-China trade negotiations. The three major Wall Street benchmarks all took weekly losses. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0...

Monday, November 18, 2019

The Week on Wall StreetStock benchmarks were little changed for much of last week, but a rally occurred Friday after news broke that the U.S. and China could be closing in on the first phase of a new trade pact. At Friday's close, the...

Monday, November 11, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Domestic and international stocks rose last week. Risk appetite outweighed concerns about the state of U.S.-China trade discussions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, Nasdaq Composite, S&P 500, and MSCI EAFE...

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Monday, November 4, 2019

The Week on Wall Street A better-than-forecast jobs report prompted a stock market rally Friday, two days after traders witnessed another interest rate cut by the Federal Reserve. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite ended the week...

Monday, October 28, 2019

The Week on Wall Street The S&P 500 came within 0.1% of a record close Friday. Stocks were lifted last week by positive news on U.S.-China trade negotiations, plus earnings announcements. The Nasdaq Composite posted the largest weekly...

Monday, October 21, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Earnings helped give the Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 a slight lift last week, offsetting investor disappointment over the small scope of the preliminary U.S.-China trade deal reached on October 11. Blue chips...

Monday, October 14, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stock prices pushed higher last week, as investors remained hyper-focused on any new developments with the U.S. trade negotiations with China. The Dow Jones Industrial Average picked up 0.91%, while the...

Monday, October 7, 2019

The Week on Wall Street The fourth quarter started with a mixed week for equities. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 0.92% for the week; the S&P 500, 0.33%. In contrast, the Nasdaq Composite improved 0.54%. Overseas stocks pulled...

Monday, September 30, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks retreated last week. Traders worried that the formal impeachment inquiry of President Donald Trump might distract White House officials from their pursuit of a trade deal with China, and shift the focus...

Monday, September 23, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Investors reacted to two major news items last week, one far more of a surprise than the other. The Federal Reserve did indeed make a rate cut, matching Wall Street expectations. Drone strikes on two of the...

Monday, September 16, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks edged toward all-time peaks during a relatively calm week marked by easing trade tensions. Friday marked the eighth straight daily advance for the Dow Jones Industrial Average.[1] Small-cap shares, as...

Monday, September 9, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks rose last week, with help from two developments: the announcement of further U.S.-China trade talks as well as August hiring and manufacturing numbers that seemed to bolster the argument for a rate cut...

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Fears of an impasse in the U.S.-China trade dispute lessened last week. While additional U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports were scheduled to take effect on September 1, China's government communicated that it...

Monday, August 26, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Traders assumed that the week's biggest news event would be Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's speech at the annual Jackson Hole banking conference. Instead, China seized the headlines by announcing new...

Monday, August 19, 2019

The Week on Wall Street U.S. stock indices saw significant ups and downs last week, with traders looking for economic cues from Treasury yields and also developments in the tariff fight between the U.S. and China. The S&P 500 lost 1...

Monday, August 12, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks spent much of last week rebounding from a Monday drop that reflected nervousness about the U.S.-China trade fight. By Thursday's closing bell, the S&P 500 had regained all its Monday losses - but it...

Monday, August 5, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Last week, the Federal Reserve cut interest rates for the first time in more than a decade, in line with Wall Street's expectations. Ironically, stocks had their worst week of 2019. The S&P 500 finished the...

Monday, July 29, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Last week, investors assessed earnings and the initial estimate of second-quarter economic growth, while awaiting the Federal Reserve's next announcement about interest rates. Stocks rose for the week;...

Monday, July 22, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stock benchmarks retreated during the first week of the second-quarter earnings season. As some big names shared quarterly results, investors seemed more interested in what might happen at the Federal Reserve's...

Monday, July 15, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Friday, the S&P 500 settled above 3,000 for the first time, after rising 0.78% for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average chalked up a milestone of its own: the blue chips ended the week above 27,000,...

Monday, July 8, 2019

The Week on Wall Street U.S. stock benchmarks opened a new quarter positively. The S&P 500 gained 1.65% in the opening week of July; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 1.21%; the Nasdaq Composite, 1.94%. Overseas, stocks in developed...

Monday, July 1, 2019

The Week on Wall Street A month of gains for stocks ended with a weekly retreat. The S&P 500 lost 0.30%; the Nasdaq Composite, 0.32%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 0.45%. In contrast, overseas shares, tracked by the MSCI EAFE...

Monday, June 24, 2019

The Week on Wall Street The S&P 500 hit an all-time peak of 2,964.03, in intraday trading Friday, while improving 2.20% across five market days. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite posted respective, 5-day advances...

Monday, June 17, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks advanced for a second straight week. The S&P 500 benchmark rose 0.47%; the Nasdaq Composite, 0.70%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 0.41%. Overseas shares, as tracked by the MSCI EAFE developed markets...

Monday, June 10, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks rallied during a week in which Wall Street was buffeted by headlines. The S&P 500 rose 4.41%. The Nasdaq Composite and Dow Jones Industrial Average respectively added 3.88% and 4.71%. The MSCI EAFE index...

Monday, June 3, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks struggled during a 4-day market week as the U.S.-China trade standoff continued to weigh on the minds of market participants. From the Friday, May 24 close to the Friday, May 31 close, the S&P 500...

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

The Week on Wall StreetStocks drifted lower last week as investors considered the possibility that the world's two largest economies might take some time to resolve key trade issues. The S&P 500 retreated 1.17%; the Nasdaq Composite,...

Monday, May 20, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks fell sharply at the start of last week over trade tensions, then recovered with help from strong earnings and indications that U.S.-China trade talks would continue. Even so, the major indices had a down...

Monday, May 13, 2019

The Week on Wall Street As we noted recently, Wall Street has a wandering eye. Last week, it focused on the new tariff threats in the ongoing U.S.-China trade dispute. Stocks fell across five trading sessions: the Dow Jones Industrial...

Monday, May 6, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks were up and down last week, and the three major benchmarks ended up little changed after five trading days. The S&P 500 rose 0.20% for the week; the Nasdaq Composite, 0.22%. The Dow Jones Industrial...

Monday, April 29, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks returned to record territory, with both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite closing at historic highs. The S&P gained 1.20% for the week; the Nasdaq, 1.85%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lagged,...

Monday, April 22, 2019

The Week on Wall Street A short and relatively placid trading week wrapped up Thursday, with the major indices turning in mixed performances. The S&P 500 retreated 0.08%, the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.17%, and the Dow Jones...

Monday, April 15, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks broke out of a narrow range on Friday following news that two major banks grew their bottom line in the first quarter. For the week, the S&P 500 rose 0.79%; the Nasdaq Composite, 0.91%. The Dow Jones...

Monday, April 8, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks just posted their second straight weekly gain. Investors were encouraged by the latest jobs report and new signs of progress on a U.S.-China trade deal. The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 1.17% in...

Monday, April 1, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Stocks ended last week higher as volatility slowed, completing their best quarter since 2009. A Friday tweet from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin encouraged investors, referring to "constructive" discussions...

Friday, March 29, 2019

As a business owner, you should carefully consider the advantages of establishing an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Generally, you're allowed a deduction for contributions you make to an employer-sponsored retirement plan. In...

Monday, March 25, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Friday, the yield of the 3-month Treasury bill exceeded the yield of the 10-year Treasury note for the first time in 12 years. For some analysts, this "inverted yield curve" may imply a short-term lessening of...

Monday, March 18, 2019

The Week on Wall Street The big story last week was the sudden grounding of Boeing 737 Max 8 and 9 passenger jets in dozens of countries. The financial effects of this ban could potentially impact the airline industry and segments of...

Friday, March 8, 2019

The business landscape is continually changing—technological advances, corporate downsizing, restructuring, and telecommuting have reshaped the marketplace.­ Although these improvements and modifications have a great impact...

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

U.S. stocks’ recent momentum has been historically impressive by many measures, and the Nasdaq Composite Index notched another milestone last week. The Nasdaq has risen for the past 10 weeks, its longest winning streak in 19...

Thursday, February 28, 2019

BACKGROUND The Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 (EGTRRA) was a sweeping piece of legislation that significantly changed the federal gift and estate tax and the GST tax for the years 2001 through 2010. The...

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

How much do you really know about your employer-sponsored retirement savings plan? If you're like many people, you have many ideas about how your plan works, which may or may not be entirely accurate. To gauge your knowledge, take...

Thursday, February 21, 2019

If you give away money or property during your life, those transfers may be subject to federal gift and estate tax and perhaps state gift tax. The money and property you own when you die (i.e., your estate) may also be subject to...

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

“Bulls make money, bears make money, and pigs get slaughtered.” Old Wall Street saying. The Chinese New Year (often called the Lunar New Year) kicked off Tuesday, February 5, and with it came the Year of the Pig. Although...

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

The cost of a membership to your local fitness center can be pricey, especially if you are looking for a modern facility with a wide selection of the most current equipment. But there are ways to improve your physical fitness without...

Friday, February 8, 2019

Purchasing homeowner’s insurance is not only critical for protecting your home and personal property against any potential liability; if you have a mortgage, your lender will require it. WHAT’S COVERED A homeowner’s...

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Diversified investors just capped one of their best months of the current economic cycle. In January, the S&P 500 Index posted its biggest monthly gain since October 2015. At the same time, the Bloomberg Barclays Aggregate Bond Index...

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Risk management is a key component in any successful business plan. In today's world — where data breaches are common occurrences — it's especially important for business owners to understand the digital risks they face....

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

The Super Bowl indicator suggests that stocks rise for the full year when the Super Bowl winner comes from the original National Football League (now the NFC), but when an original American Football League (now the AFC) team wins,...

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Most Americans know the fundamentals of good health: exercise, proper diet, sufficient sleep, regular check-ups, and no smoking or excessive alcohol. Yet, despite this knowledge, changing existing behaviors can be difficult. Look no...

Thursday, January 24, 2019

The baby boomers have re-defined everything they’ve touched, from music to marriage to parenting and, more lately, to what “old” means—60 is the new 50! Longer, healthier living, however, can put greater stress...

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

The big bounce off the December 24 lows continued last week, as the S&P 500 Index added 2.9% for the week. In fact, it has gained 2.9%, 1.9%, 2.5%, and 2.9% over the past four weeks for a total gain of 10.5%. Of course, the S&P 500 did...

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Thanks to healthier lifestyles and advances in modern medicine, the worldwide population over age 60 is growing. The United Nations estimates that by 2050 the number of people aged 60 and older will have more than doubled.¹ As our...

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Yesterday’s U.K. Parliament vote was another bump in the road for Brexit. As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, the British pound and the euro have steadily declined over the past few months, weighed down in large part by...

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Everyone loves a winner. If an investment is successful, most people naturally want to stick with it. But is that the best approach? It may sound counter intuitive, but it may be possible to have too much of a good thing. Over time,...

Friday, January 11, 2019

Keeping your cool can be hard to do when the market goes on one of its periodic roller-coaster rides. It's useful to have strategies in place that prepare you both financially and psychologically to handle market volatility. Here are...

Thursday, January 10, 2019

No matter how much money you make, completely mastering money early on in life can help you potentially achieve what everyone wants: a financially comfortable today and a financially secure tomorrow. Mastering money in our society can...

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Stocks have rebounded strongly off the December lows, with the S&P 500 Index adding 2% in January to its 7% gain over the last week of 2018. We see potential for further gains ahead given the fundamentals supporting economic growth and...

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Technology has not only shrunk the tools we use, but it has also given small businesses the power to operate like big businesses. Technological tools can help small businesses get better organized, efficiently manage their finances,...

Thursday, January 3, 2019

You want to retire comfortably when the time comes. You also want to help your child go to college. So how do you juggle the two? The truth is, saving for your retirement and your child's education at the same time can be a challenge....

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Recent Federal Reserve (Fed) rhetoric has spooked financial markets, especially as uncertainty has clouded investors’ horizons. But we still believe the fundamental U.S. economic landscape is compelling, and despite market...

Friday, December 28, 2018

Go out into your yard and dig a big hole. Every month, throw $50 into it, but don't take any money out until you're ready to buy a house, send your child to college, or retire. It sounds a little crazy, doesn't it? But that's what...

Thursday, December 27, 2018

On Monday, the S&P 500 Index came about as close as possible to the technical definition of a bear market without officially registering one (defined as a 20% or larger decline based on closing prices). Enduring these sharp declines...

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

S&P 500 Index Reaches Bear Market on an Intra-Day Basis. While the S&P 500 Index is technically not in a bear market by the most widely used definition (20% or more decline based on closing prices), it is important to recognize that...

Friday, December 21, 2018

In 2017, the U.S. had a record 11.5 million millionaires, up from 10.8 million in the previous year. An increase in personal wealth may bring greater financial flexibility; it may also bring greater liability. Individuals with high net...

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

So far it’s been rough for stocks in December, a month that has historically been bullish. How bad has it been? After 10 trading days, we’re off to the worst start to December since 1980! In fact, the S&P 500 Index is...

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

When it comes to estate planning, women have unique concerns. The fact is that women live an average of 5.0 years longer than men.* That's important because it means that there's a greater chance that you'll need your assets to last...

Monday, December 17, 2018

We are pleased to announce the release of the LPL Research Outlook 2019: FUNDAMENTAL: How to Focus on What Really Matters in the Markets, filled with investment insights and market guidance for the year ahead. After nearly 10 years of...

Friday, December 14, 2018

Determining the value of an estate is a fundamental first step in estate management and a critical requirement for settling a decedent’s estate.¹ How to Assess the Value of an Estate Select the date of calculation. Because...

Thursday, December 13, 2018

What makes for a great family vacation? Should it include learning as well as leisure? Thinking about that next family trip? If you are mulling over how to make your next one great, consider these questions and factors. Should...

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Determining the value of an estate is a fundamental first step in estate management and a critical requirement for settling a decedent’s estate.¹ How to Assess the Value of an Estate Select the date of calculation. Because...

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The gap between setting goals and achieving them can be difficult to bridge. To enhance the chances of achieving personal goals, reminders and motivation are essential; making a New Year’s resolution is simply not enough. A...

Monday, December 10, 2018

Last week was a tough week for stocks, with the S&P 500 Index down 4.5%, the worst performance since March. So what are some things investors should consider? To help answer that question, here are five takeaways on the near-term...

Thursday, December 6, 2018

More women are working and taking charge of their own retirement planning than ever before. What does retirement mean to you? Do you dream of traveling? Pursuing a hobby? Volunteering your time, or starting a new career or business?...

Friday, November 30, 2018

The Social Security program allows you to start receiving benefits as soon as you reach age 62. The question is, should you? Monthly payments differ substantially depending on when you start receiving benefits. The longer you wait (up...

Thursday, November 29, 2018

You’re young, have little in savings and likely have no one yet relying on you financially. So why do you need to think about estate management?¹ Here are four great reasons: Estate Strategies: They're Not Just for the...

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

According to Giving USA 2017, Americans gave an estimated $390.05 billion to charity in 2016. That’s the highest total in more than 60 years since the report was first published.1 Americans give to charity for two main reasons:...

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

So, you're thinking of going into business for yourself. You have several options available, and all involve some degree of risk. Do you want to create a start-up operation? Perhaps you are planning on buying an existing business. Or,...

Monday, November 19, 2018

A flurry of new investment products, the emergence of global investing, the shift from company-funded pension plans to employee-driven retirement plans (like 401(k) plans), and uncertainty about Social Security have all contributed to...

Friday, November 16, 2018

Here’s a number that will knock your socks off: $400 trillion.1By 2050, the retirement savings shortfall in eight of the world’s largest economies is expected to reach $400 trillion, according to estimates from the World...

Friday, November 9, 2018

Your credit report contains information about your past and present credit transactions. It's used primarily by potential lenders to evaluate your creditworthiness. So if you're about to apply for credit, especially for something...

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Massive computer hacks and data breaches are now common occurrences — an unfortunate consequence of living in a digital world. Once identity thieves have your information, they can use it to gain access to your bank and credit...

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Dear Valued Investor: The potential outcomes of the midterm elections have been dominating the news cycle lately, and we know from history that the markets typically do not like uncertainty. With the Democrats taking control of the...

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn—they’ve all fallen prey to hackers who exposed passwords and other personal information for hundreds of thousands of their users. If you haven’t yet had your password stolen, chances are,...

Monday, November 5, 2018

Concerns over identity theft continue to grow, especially with news of data breaches at major companies and financial institutions. Unfortunately, you have little control over the hacking of these companies, but you do have control...

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Conventional wisdom says that what goes up, must come down. But even if you view market volatility as a normal occurrence, it can be tough to handle when it's your money at stake. Though there's no foolproof way to handle the ups and...

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

This modern twist on the Ben Franklin maxim reflects the multiplicity of taxes to which earnings are subject in today’s world.¹ Finding ways to manage expenses is one of the cornerstones of a sound financial strategy. Here...

Monday, October 29, 2018

Men and women may not be on equal footing when it comes to investing for the future. On average, women work fewer years and earn less than men, but they also tend to live longer.1 Therefore, women must focus on the concerns that are...

Friday, October 26, 2018

Tip: If You’re a Victim. If you think you may have had your identity stolen, take action immediately. Start by contacting the Federal Trade Commission (www.ftc.gov), where you can find information about what to do next. Many...

Thursday, October 25, 2018

October has been a rough month for equities, but then again it’s historically been one of the most volatile periods of the year. “October is known for volatility, and we’ve sure seen it so far,” explained Senior...

Monday, October 15, 2018

Tip: One key difference between a will and a living trust is when they take effect. A will takes effect when you die; a living trust takes effect when you execute it and begins to operate when you transfer assets to it. Do you have a...

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Stocks just had their worst one-day drop since February, as a combination of higher bond yields, U.S./China tensions, nervousness over the upcoming midterm elections, six straight months of gains, and worries about peak margins this...

Monday, September 10, 2018

According to the National Association of Women Business Owners, there are 9.4 million women-owned businesses, employing nearly 8 million people and generating $1.5 trillion in sales in 2015.1 Many of these businesses started small,...

Monday, September 10, 2018

According to the National Association of Women Business Owners, there are 9.4 million women-owned businesses, employing nearly 8 million people and generating $1.5 trillion in sales in 2015.1 Many of these businesses started small,...

Monday, February 5, 2018

Every year the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) releases its list of tax scams, spotlighting the myriad ways that people try to separate you from your money.¹ The “Dirty Dozen” Identity Theft Using your personal...

Saturday, January 6, 2018

By default, single women have always taken responsibility for managing household wealth, but the latest in a series of ongoing studies into the attitudes and actions of women around financial topics found that an ever-increasing...

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Presenting the LPL Research Outlook 2018: Return of the Business Cycle, packed with investment insights and market analysis to guide you through all the action we may see in the year ahead. "Return of the business cycle" refers to a...

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

By Maryann Ruck of Integrated Wealth Strategies Boulder, Colorado Similar to taking care of your personal health by proactively incorporating healthy habits and annual checkups, you can also take control of your financial health when...

Thursday, October 5, 2017

What to Look for in a Financial Advisor Consumers surveyed say top advisor attributes include knowledge, experience and objective advice By Maryann Ruck of Integrated Wealth Strategies Boulder, Colorado When you’ve decided to...

Friday, August 4, 2017

Tip: How Much? Check your Social Security earnings and see an estimate of your benefits on the Web site, www.ssa.gov. Social Security’s been a fact of retirement life ever since it was established in 1935. We all think we know...