Interest Rate Debate Hinges on 3 Factors

The Federal Reserve did not raise interest rates in September. Will they in October?

The U.S. Federal Reserve decided against raising the federal funds rate at its latest meeting in September, extending its zero interest rate policy and ramping up the debate about what it will take for the Fed to act. Disagreements in 3 areas explain the Fed’s caution. The most crucial and most recent influence on the… Read More

Don’t React To Every Bit of Stock Market News

Reacting to Stock Market Volatility Can Have a Negative Impact on Your Investment Portfolio.

When you’re learning to play football, one of the first things any coach will teach you is to watch the other player’s waist. The reason for that is that it’s easy to get faked out by watching the head—or the feet. Just like it can be easy to get faked out and over-react to the… Read More

Growth vs. Value: A Tale of Two Investment Strategies

Growth vs. Value Investing: Which of the investment strategies leads to long-term success?

Building an investment portfolio for the long term means finding a strategy that will work in both the best of times and the worst of times. And with so many investment styles to choose from, it pays to understand the basics. One of the most fundamental characteristics of a stock is whether it favors growth… Read More

Income Investors Are Feeling the Squeeze

How Income Investors Can Manage Their Investment Portfolio in Today's Economic Environment

Investors have been finding it increasingly difficult to generate income in their investment portfolios. This is a problem that impacts many people who rely on portfolio income to live on or to supplement the income they receive from other sources, such as social security and pensions. When interest rates are higher, options for investment income are… Read More

Will the Current European Economy Affect Your Investment Portfolio?

European Economy

Collectively, the European Union (EU) has the largest economy in the world as measured by gross domestic product (GDP). Last year the total value of all goods and services produced within the 28-member EU totaled 14.3 trillion euros, according to the International Monetary Fund.[1] But the European economy has been languishing, and due to its… Read More

How Bond Market Investors Cope in a Low-Rate Environment


It’s understandable that bond market investors might be frustrated at this point in time. Most already have lower total return expectations than stock market investors, which they accept in exchange for lower overall levels of risk and regular interest payments. However, the total return expectations within the bond market have become so low that investors… Read More

The Intricacies of International Investing

The Intricacies of International Investing

When aiming to create a diversified portfolio, many investors assume that international exposure is a necessary component. This makes sense, considering that roughly half of global stock market value is based inside the United States while the other half is generated abroad. International investing is important for some, particularly larger investors with long time horizons… Read More

Oil, Markets, Volatility

Oil, Markets, Volatility

David R. Kotok

Sharply lower oil prices have occasioned a huge discussion about their impact. We see it play out daily in newspapers, on TV and radio, at websites, on blogs, and in market letters. The range of forecasts runs from one extreme to another. On one side, pundits predict a recession resulting from a US energy sector… Read More

Is the Fed Really “Stealing from Savers”?


Geoff Considine

In a recent article on MarketWatch, Chris Martenson asserts that the Fed’s low interest rate policy and quantitative easing in recent years is deliberately stealing from savers. This article has elicited a big response, with almost 800 comments and almost 2000 likes on Facebook. The key point of the article is that the Fed’s policy… Read More