Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Retirement Data: 18th Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey

Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies (TRCS) published their 18th annual survey results at the end of June. Here are some highlights quoted from their press release and their research:
  • American workers’ total household retirement savings have grown to $71,000 (estimated median) in 2017, up from $53,000 in 2013. Baby Boomer workers, the generation that is currently entering retirement, have saved $164,000 (estimated median) in all household retirement accounts, up from $103,000 in 2013.

Monday, July 2, 2018

July Market Update - Foreign Shares Lose Ground

The S&P 500 was up 0.48% in June. After falling 1.18% in Q1 of 2018 the S&P 500 increased 2.88% in Q2 2018. YTD through the end of June the S&P 500 is up 1.67%. The YTD gains are thanks to a rally in only two sectors: technology and consumer discretionary. Moreover, Amazon.com, a component of the consumer discretionary sector, has accounted for 34.6% of all the S&P 500 gains for the first six months of the year. Amazon.com has increased over 45% since the start of the year. Foreign investing continued to sour during June with the Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Index ETF, VEU, down 2.14%. VEU(price) enters July with negative YTD returns, measuring -3.88%. It's time to review price, sentiment and valuation as we start July.

Retirement Data: Vanguard How America Saves

In June, Vanguard released their report How America Saves 2018. Highlights from the report include:
  • "In 2017, the average account balance for Vanguard participants was $103,866; the median balance was $26,331. In 2017, Vanguard participants’ average account balances rose by 8% compared with 2016 and median account balances rose by 7%. Two factors are driving the changes in participant account balances. The first is a changing business mix—new plans converting to Vanguard recently have had lower account balances. The second is the rising adoption of automatic enrollment, which results in more individuals saving, but also a growing number of smaller balances." 

Monday, June 4, 2018

June 2018 Market Update

The S&P 500 was up 2.16% in May. YTD through the end of May the S&P 500 is up 1.18%. A couple markets to highlight before we review price, sentiment and valuation. First, technology stocks continue to significantly outperform the market with an incredibly strong performance in May. The Technology Select SPDR ETF, XLK, is up 9.65% YTD through the end of May.  Moreover, the Invesco S&P 500 Equal Weight Technology ETF, RYT,  is up 11.13% YTD.  On the flip side, foreign investing soured during the month with the Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Index ETF, VEU, down 1.99%. VEU enters June with slightly negative returns for 2018. Now let's review price, sentiment and valuation as we start June.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Retirement Data: Fidelity Plan Balances Q1 2018

Please click on the above chart to enlarge. From Fidelity's press release:
  • Average individual 401(k), 403(b) and IRA account balances increased year-over- year, but dipped slightly from Q4 2017. The average 401(k) balance dropped to $102,900, about 1 percent lower than Q4 2017 but an 8 percent increase from Q1 2017. The average IRA balance also dipped about 1 percent to $105,100 from last quarter, but increased 8 percent year-over-year. The average 403(b) account was $82,100, down slightly from Q4 2017 but up 9 percent year-over-year.

Friday, May 4, 2018

May 2018 Market Update - Election Cycle in Focus

The S&P 500 was up 0.22% in April. This marks a reversal from the negative returns in February and March. At the end of April, YTD the S&P was down 0.96%. Let's review price, sentiment and valuation as we begin the month of May.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

April 2018 Market Update

The S&P 500 was down 2.64% in March. When we examine global securities via the Morgan Stanley Capital International All Country World Index (MSCI ACWI, iShares ETF ACWI), which represents 85% of global investable equity market, it has snapped its streak of positive quarters at 9 with a loss in Q1 2018. This is the first quarterly loss since Q3 2015. Let's review price, sentiment and valuation for April.