Financial Advice for Retirement, Social Security, IRAs and Estate Planning

Bob's Blog on Retirement & Beyond

A Bear Turns a Little Bullish

August 7, 2017

Jeremy Grantham of GMO has been bearish on most stocks for a while. He’s said the valuations are stretched, and economic growth isn’t strong. But in his latest quarterly letter to shareholders, he modified his rhetoric a bit. Now, he believes that over time price-earnings ratios will return to something closer to their long-term averages. […]

Retirement Account Balances Back to Record Highs

August 4, 2017

The extended bull market in stocks has helped restore IRA and 401(k) account balances hit record highs for the third consecutive quarter, according to Fidelity Investments. Also helping boost balances, of course, are higher contributions from employers and employees. Employees put a record average of $5,850 into their 401(k)s over the past 12 months, a […]

Perspective on Venezuela’s Collapse

August 4, 2017

An economist who used to be a government official in Venezuela offers some details about how bad the situation is in Venezuela and how things became so bad. Put another way, Venezuela’s economic catastrophe dwarfs any in the history of the US, Western Europe, or the rest of Latin America. And yet these numbers grossly […]

Reflections on the U.S. Housing Cycle

August 4, 2017

How much of the rise in U.S. housing prices was due to a bubble and how much was a higher equilibrium in the market? This blog post looks at that question and concludes that in the 2000s various factors raised the equilibrium price of homes above what it had been for many decades. Only a […]

Old Folks Aren’t So Bad Off

August 3, 2017

For years researchers and policy analysts have used government data to show that the over-65 part of the population isn’t doing well financially. The data drove government policy, among other things. This report says that data wasn’t too accurate. The data collection method resulted in significant assets and sources of income being undercounted. Older Americans […]

Hard Times for Hedge Funds

August 3, 2017

Hardly a week passes when there isn’t a major story about the hard times hedge funds are having earning decent returns and keeping clients and employees. This week’s story is about one of the long-time icons of the business, Paul Tudor Jones. It explains that, because his management style hasn’t worked well since the financial […]

First Half Performance

August 3, 2017

This post from Russell Investments compares the performance of emerging market stocks to other major assets. We’ve been optimistic about emerging markets since early 2016, and that optimism has paid off so far. Emerging markets, especially Latin American markets are the top performers for recent periods. What’s more, the strength in emerging markets has extended […]

Dissecting the Dow

August 2, 2017

It’s a good idea to periodically look inside a stock index to see how the performance of individual stocks differs from the index performance and how some stocks are affecting the index. In this post, Bespoke Investment Group looks at the recent performance of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. It found that Boeing is driving […]

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