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Volatility Continues – March 16, 2020

The Week on Wall Street

Markets remained exceptionally volatile, buffeted by the spreading impact of coronavirus, uncertain responses from federal policymakers, and the sudden drop in oil prices.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 10.36%, while the S&P 500 declined 8.79%. The Nasdaq Composite index slid 8.18% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, dropped 17.75%.1https://www.wsj.com/market-data,2https://quotes.wsj.com/index/XX/990300/historical-prices

Markets Grapple with Uncertainty

A dispute between Saudi Arabia and Russia over oil production cuts, mounting fears of the coronavirus, the declaration of the COVID-19 as a global pandemic by the World Health Organization, and the news of a travel ban from Europe unsettled markets throughout the week.

Stock trading was halted twice by circuit breakers, which are designed to briefly stop trading when losses in the S&P 500 reach 7%. Stocks sold off sharply Thursday before ending a tumultuous week with a strong rebound on Friday.3https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/12/stock-futures-hit-a-limit-down-trading-halt-for-a-second-time-this-week-heres-what-that-means.html

Troubles in the Oil Patch

The failure of Russia to join Saudi Arabia in supporting lower oil production targets left Saudi Arabia fuming. In response, Saudi Arabia announced its intention to raise oil output.

Oil prices plummeted on the news, contributing to the stock market’s drop on Monday. While lower oil prices may represent a boon to consumers in the form of lower gasoline prices and relief to companies with high energy consumption (e.g., airlines, chemical), they also pose a risk to the American energy industry. If low oil prices persist, it may lead to lower capital expenditures and potential issues in the credit markets, as less-well-capitalized companies struggle to manage their debt obligations.4https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/09/cramer-9-or-10-oil-companies-may-go-bankrupt-amid-crude-declines.html

Final Thought

The world’s central bankers have already taken several steps to combat the economic impact of the coronavirus, including lowering short-term interest rates. The financial markets are now looking for a response from the U.S. government. In evaluating any actions from the federal government, investors may focus on the size and timing of policy proposals to determine if they can reduce current levels of economic uncertainty.

Robert Roman
CEO, Managing Director
MGO | Wealth Advisors

THE WEEK AHEAD:
KEY ECONOMIC DATA

Tuesday: Retail Sales, JOLTS Report (Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey), Industrial Production

Wednesday: Housing Starts, FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) Announcement

Thursday: Leading Economic Indicators

Friday: Existing Home Sales

 

Source: Econoday, March 13, 2020
The Econoday economic calendar lists upcoming U.S. economic data releases (including key economic indicators), Federal Reserve policy meetings, and speaking engagements of Federal Reserve officials. The content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The forecasts or forward-looking statements are based on assumptions and may not materialize. The forecasts also are subject to revision.

THE WEEK AHEAD:
COMPANIES REPORTING EARNINGS

Monday: Coupa Software (Coup)
Tuesday: FedEx Corp. (FDX), MongoDB (MDB)
Wednesday: General Mills (GIS), Ctrip.com (TCOM)
Thursday: Tencent Holdings (TCEHY), Lennar (LEN)
Friday: Tiffany & Co. (TIF), BMW (BAMXF)

Source: Zacks, March 13, 2020
Companies mentioned are for informational purposes only. It should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of the securities. Any investment should be consistent with your objectives, time frame and risk tolerance. The return and principal value of investments will fluctuate as market conditions change. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost. Companies may reschedule when they report earnings without notice.

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“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
– Winston Churchill

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Worried About Missing The Tax Deadline?

April 15 is the tax filing deadline for most people in 2020. If you didn’t file a tax return or an extension to file, it’s not too late to take action. Here’s what you can do:

File and pay soon. If you owe taxes, you should file and pay as soon as you can to minimize the interest and penalties that you will owe on any taxes due.

Pay as much as you can. If you owe taxes but can’t pay in full, you should pay as much as you can when you file your tax return.

Remember your refund. If you are owed a refund, you should file as soon as possible to get it. If you don’t file your return within three years, you could lose your right to the refund.

For more information on filing late taxes, speak to a qualified tax professional.

* This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax advice. We suggest that you discuss your specific tax issues with a qualified tax professional.

Tip adapted from IRS.gov5https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-opens-2020-filing-season-for-individual-filers-on-jan-27

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Why You Should Play for the Center of a Green

How many times do you hit a perfect approach shot? How often do your tee shots on par 3s do exactly what you want them to do? The answer to both these questions may be, “Less often than I would like.” For that reason, it really is wise to play for the center of most greens, especially on a hazard-heavy course.

Your first instinct may be to go for the flag on every approach shot. Sometimes, that doesn’t leave you much room for error. Playing for the center of the green (or the fat part of the green) may be conservative, but putting for a birdie from 25 to 30 feet out is better than facing a 15-footer for a bogey after losing a ball in a hazard.

Tip adapted from Pipestone Golf6https://www.pipestonegolf.com/blog/41-improve-approach-shots

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Make Your Own Luck – with Science!

    It’s a commonly held belief that some people are simply luckier than others. Researchers have determined, however, that these fortunate few aren’t charmed by chance rather they continually sought and created opportunities for their “luck.” Here are five things these individuals have in common.

    1. They’re not passive. They volunteer themselves for planning and leadership positions.
    2. They make plans to achieve their goals. They search, organize, and take action to reach their aspirations.
    3. They’re observant. They are constantly aware of their surroundings.
    4. They have in-person social connections. Networking is their forte.
    5. They have an impressive virtual presence. Their social media connections and prominence are highly optimized.

    The next time you’re feeling down about missing a chance or not reaching a goal, turn it into an opportunity to create your own luck next time. You never know what could happen.

    Tip adapted from PsychologyToday.com7https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/lifetime-connections/201603/5-ways-create-your-own-luck

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    Build a Wardrobe That Lasts

    Are you cleaning out your closet this spring? Look for creative and environmentally friendly ways to get rid of the clothing that doesn’t work for you anymore, while building a wardrobe that will stand the test of time.

    Buy the highest-quality clothing you can afford. Most garments made today are “fast fashion”; meaning that the clothing isn’t made to last for more than a year before being discarded. Most textile waste ends up in landfills, so buying better-quality clothing that will last you beyond the year to come is an investment for your wardrobe, wallet, and the environment.

    Donate clothing in good condition. Have clothing in good condition that you no longer wear? Donate it to thrift shops, or for higher-end items, sell it online. For those garments that are beyond repair or not suitable for donating, check to see if there are any textile recyclers in your local area.

    Tip adapted from RealSimple8https://www.realsimple.com/beauty-fashion/clothing/cleaning-out-my-closet

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    Diversification does not guarantee profit nor is it guaranteed to protect assets.

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    The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general.

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    The MSCI EAFE Index was created by Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) that serves as a benchmark of the performance in major international equity markets as represented by 21 major MSCI indices from Europe, Australia and Southeast Asia.

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    Opinions expressed are subject to change without notice and are not intended as investment advice or to predict future performance.

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