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It's About Context...

People frequently ask my opinion on financial issues and economic events. This blog allows me to answer their questions and provide context for those things that affect their financial health.

Investor Sentiment – A Poor Measure of Irrational Exuberance

Former Fed Chief Alan Greenspan coined the phrase “Irrational Exuberance” in 1996, during the dot-com craze of the 1990s.  Many interpreted the phrase as his warning that the market was getting overvalued or overheated.

Since the dot-com bubble imploded in 2000, we’ve heard the phrase whenever someone perceives any kind of speculative frenzy in the stocks, housing, commodities or some other asset class or area of the economy.  For many, irrational exuberance means we’re in bubble territory.

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VIX, Not the Cold or Flu Remedy, But a Poor Measure of Market Volatility

When you hear someone say VIX, don’t confuse it with Vick’s, the brand that brings you "The Nighttime Sniffling Sneezing Coughing Aching Stuffy Head Fever So You Can Rest Medicine.”

VIX is the CBOE Volatility Index, a popular measure of near-term volatility of S&P 500 index options. It is often referred to as the fear index and it represents one measure of the anticipated stock market volatility over the next 30-day period.

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Mutual Funds are Gluten Free

Just like many food companies are now advertising their products as gluten free, mutual funds companies are also marketing smart.

They understand that it is not in their best interest to show poor-performing mutual funds. Have you ever seen an ad for a mutual fund that lost 40%, 20% or even 5%?

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The Certainty of Uncertainty and its Financial Implications.

Life is full of uncertainty.  We as humans crave certainty, but life doesn’t offer it to us.

Over the past decade, I’ve heard lots of concerns about the economy and stock market.  And, we’ve been constantly reminded that what lies ahead is uncertain.

The headlines are filled with "Market Falls on …Recession Concerns …Unemployment Report …Gridlock in the Capital.”  “The Markets Rally on … Jobs Report …Earnings Surprise … Fed Rate Cut.”  Take your pick.  The possibilities are endless.

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What in the U.S. is going on?

The U.S. stock market is having its worst showing in years. It seems that nearly anytime the market declines a few days in a row, we hear someone proclaiming the bear is coming – the bear market that is.

With several days of sharp declines, the number one question on your mind right now is likely, “William, should we view this as a short-term correction or a sign that a bear market is just around the corner?”

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"What you do speaks so loud that I cannot hear what you say." ---- Ralph Waldo Emerson