Where were you on March 9, 2009? Do you remember the headwinds hitting Wall Street stocks then? When the closing bell rang at the New York Stock Exchange that Monday afternoon, it marked the end of another down day for stocks. Just hours earlier, the Wall Street Journal had asked: “How Low Can Stocks Go?”1
The Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index answered that question by sinking to 676.53, even with mergers and acquisitions making headlines. The index was under 700 for the first time since 1996. The Dow Jones Industrial Average tumbled to a closing low of 6,547.05.2
To quote Dickens, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” It was the bottom of the bear market – and it was also the best time, in a generation, to buy stocks.2
Buoyed by news of one major bank announcing a return to profitability and another stating it would refrain from further government bailouts, the Dow rose 597 points for the week ending on March 16, 2009. On March 26, the Dow settled at 7,924.56, more than 20% above its March 9 settlement. The bull market was back.3
Should the bull market keep rolling along, it may reach yet another milestone in a matter of weeks.
March could mark the bull market’s eleventh year. Making it that far would add to its record length, but it is by no means guaranteed. There is a history of a weaker market during January of an election year. This could lead to a correction, which is a decline of at least 10% from a recent high. Perhaps, but a correction is not necessarily the end of the bull market. In fact, such a correction would not be the first for this specific bull market.4,5
The gains of the current bull market did not come without turbulence, and stocks in no way turned into a “sure thing.” The risk inherent in the market is still substantial along with the potential for loss. The lesson this long bull market has taught is simply that the bad times in the stock market may be worth enduring. Good times may replace those bad times more swiftly than anyone can anticipate.
Getting rich quick can be liberating, but it can also be frustrating. A sudden wealth windfall can help you address retirement saving or college funding anxieties, and it may also allow you to live and work on your terms. On the other hand, you’ll pay more taxes, attract more attention, and maybe even contend with … Continue reading “When a Windfall Comes Your Way”
The SECURE Act passed into law in late 2019 and changed several aspects of retirement investing. These modifications included modifying the ability to stretch an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) and changing the age when IRA holders must start taking requirement minimum distributions to 72-years-old.1,2
When you are in your seventies, Internal Revenue Service rules say that you must start making withdrawals from your traditional IRA(s). In I.R.S. terminology, these annual withdrawals are considered your Required Minimum Distribution (RMDs).1
Families are one of the great joys in life, and part of the love you show to your family is making sure that their basic needs are met. While that’s only to be expected from birth through the high school years, many households are helping their adult children well into their twenties and beyond at … Continue reading “Retirement and Adult Children”
When interest rates start to climb, will these be the CD to own? Step-up certificates of deposit (also called rising-rate CDs) are fixed-income investments with a bit of wiggle room. When you have CDs with a step-up provision, you have a chance to exchange the initial yield for a better one as interest rates rise. … Continue reading “Step-Up CD”
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