Even with the backdrop of many unresolved problems, the financial markets continued strong performance in 2012. Many of the major domestic stock indexes experienced returns in excess of 10% for the year, with the S&P 500 advancing by 16%.
There are a number of indexes that attempt to measure the performance of the financial markets and serve as a gauge of economic activity. The following are descriptions of several of the most common indexes: (more…)
Parents with special needs children can face a unique set of financial challenges. However, like all financial challenges, it is important to take measures early to financially prepare for the future. Here are a number of financial planning ideas and considerations for those parents who have special needs children: (more…)
Vanguard has an interactive tool on their website that allows visitors to compare the results when attempting to time the market based on certain investment rules. For example, if you exit the market after a 10% decline and re-enter the market after it appreciates by 5%, how would your results compare to simply owning the market (S&P 500 index) for the entire period? The tool can provide outcomes that span over the last 22 years.
I sampled this tool for quite a while, attempting to effectively “time” the market. I have to admit that I was very surprised by the results. Here is the link to the tool if you would like to give it a try for yourself – The truth about emotion.
With more than $80 billion invested in exchange traded funds (ETFs), they have become a very popular investment for both retail and institutional investors. While ETFs can be an integral component of a sound investment strategy, investors should understand the tax treatment of these investments in order to avoid unexpected tax consequences.