September 18, 2010
Weekly Market Wrap: Stock markets continued a positive September as the S&P 500 forged ahead another 1.4% on the week to close at 1,126 and move into positive territory for the year once again, up a little less than 1%. The S&P 500 is now up more than 7% in September. Gold continued its climb closing up 2.3% at $1,274 per oz. Oil and the Dollar both lost ground this week. Oil was down 3.9% to $73.56 per barrel and the Dollar was down 1.6% against other major world currencies to $81.41.
The S&P’s week started strong on Monday with a 12 point rise as strong output from China and a narrowing budget deficit moved the markets higher. The rest of the week was pretty flat with the market moving up and down and ending only 4 points higher than Monday’s close. On Wednesday factory output cooled down but the market moved higher despite that news. On Thursday the manufacturing numbers were lower but a surprise in declining jobless claims allowed the market a flat day. Friday brought better than expected retail sales numbers but the UofM consumer confidence numbers came in lower than expected.
Another positive week in the markets should hopefully move us further away from the possibility of a double-dip recession. We are still waiting for a pick-up in the job market to move the markets significantly higher and get us out of the current trading range.
Mortgage rates dropped over the last week. The Schwab Bank 15-year rate is now at 4.06% and the 30-year rate is at 4.50%. These rates are as of 9/17/2010 and assume no points, no origination fee and a $250,000 mortgage.
The Week at AAM (to highlight what I do for clients and how I am different than most advisors):
- Had breakfast with a life insurance agent who can bring some small business succession planning expertise to myself and my clients.
- Had lunch with the Grand Rapids Entrepreneur’s Club to learn more about company branding and meet some new business owners.
- Met with a CPA to learn how we can help each other grow our client bases and help our clients reach their financial goals.
- Reviewed with many clients and updated their financial plans.
- Rebalanced client portfolios. Raised cash for some and got cash invested for others.
- Met with two new prospects, one in person and one by phone.
I hope you had a great week as well. Please let me know if there is ever anything I can do for you or if something has changed in your financial situation to warrant a meeting or a change of investment policy.
Ronald J. VanSurksum, CFP®
Advanced Asset Management, LLC