Home Authors Posts by MediaWize
The 2020 first quarter taxes are due Feb. 1, with a 10-day grace period. Please be advised that postmarks are not accepted in accordance with the State of New Jersey tax laws, therefore the payment must be received by Feb. 10. Details follow on the different options for making tax payments.
Coming into 2019, the S&P 500 had produced a positive return during 39 of the last 50 years, i.e., 1969-2018, equal to 78% of the time. With just six trading days remaining in 2019, the S&P 500 is up +31.1% YTD (total return), on pace to be the index’s best calendar year result since 1997. The S&P 500 has set 32 record closing highs this year (including last Friday 12/20/19) to continue yet another long-term trend – the high close for the stock index during the calendar year has occurred during the month of December in 20 of the last 35 years, i.e., 57% of the time (source: BTN Research).
The Federal Reserve meets this week, its final scheduled gathering of 2019, with zero market expectations of a fourth consecutive rate cut taking place. The three Fed rate cuts implemented since July were seen as a boost to “jump start” consumer spending, i.e., lower interest rates incent Americans to borrow/spend more.
Here’s a summary of last week’s key economic data: the Federal Reserve ended a two-day meeting by dropping short-term interest rates by 25 basis points, its third consecutive meeting that has ended in a rate cut; the U.S. economy grew by +1.9% in the third quarter 2019, a measurement that will be tweaked two additional times over the next two months; American employers hired a net +128,000 new employees in October 2019, and our country’s jobless rate rose fractionally to 3.6%; and finally, the S&P 500 closed last week at 3067, an alltime record
Ambassador and former U.S. Congressman William (Bill) J. Hughes, Sr. of Ocean City, NJ, passed away on Wednesday, October 30, 2019 at his home. He was 87 years old. Born on October 17, 1932 in Penns Grove, New Jersey, where he graduated from Penns Grove High School in 1955.
Stock market investors are voting with their dollars and apparently, they believe a U.S.-China trade deal is more likely than not. The S&P 500 rallied to close at 3023 last Friday (10/25/19), within 0.1% of its all-time closing high set three months ago on 7/26/19. The venerable stock index is up +22.5% YTD (total return) (source: BTN Research).
If the U.S. is looking for leverage in its ongoing trade war with China, it’s in the numbers. China’s economy grew by +6.0% in the third quarter 2019, i.e., a year-over-year growth rate, its lowest performance result since the fourth quarter of 1989, or nearly 30 years ago.
It was a “good” jobs number, but apparently not “too good” of a number for stock market watchers. A “good” number suggests the U.S.A. is not sliding towards a recession, while a “too good” number might result in the Federal Reserve deciding that another interest rate cut is not needed at their next scheduled meeting.