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The Northern Star 09/10/18 A Shaky Start to September


Message from Jon

Returning from a stay-cation found me fighting some kind of sinus congestion, which makes coherent thought and conversation a bit of a stretch! Apologies to anyone whom I spoke with during the week, because you can bet I am not confident of what it is that I can recall from our conversations.
Like Purdue Football, we began this past week with a lot of speculations and good vibrations that the market is rallying and getting stronger-only to be surprised by disappointment mid-week with a couple days of downturn.1Seasons like that can get disheartening and end up with you making decisions that, in turn, cost you more than they gain.
We have seen the international space continue to plague accounts with underperformance, while growth and domestic stocks have begun to show signs of positive returns! Our investments in cannabis have paid off BIG and are showing no signs of slowing down with Canada and the states in the US moving toward legalization. At this point, all signs point to a $47B per year industry in the not-so-distant future.2
The indicators continue to show signs of improvement, demonstrating that you should remain fully invested for the time being-although there are growing concerns of a market melt-down in our future that may make 2008 look small in comparison.3 At this point, I can say that it's not an if, it is a when this comes to fruition, we will be prepared and ready to protect clients, but until the evidence forms, we remain invested for growth and pushing forward.
Till we speak again, enjoy your football season!

  1. https://www.purdueexponent.org/sports/mens/football/article_f283aa1c-138d-571a-9e8a-272867f84b93.html
  2. https://www.marketwatch.com/story/cannabis-stocks-rally-anew-as-analysts-cheer-latest-tie-ups-in-growing-sector-2018-09-05 
  3. https://www.forbes.com/sites/jessecolombo/2018/09/05/disaster-is-inevitable-when-americas-stock-market-bubble-bursts/#266da9791b82

A Shaky Start to September


Domestic markets fell last week due to negative trade news and declining tech stocks, with the S&P 500 and Dow both breaking their multi-week winning streaks. Meanwhile, the NASDAQ posted losses for 4 days in a row for the first time since April and experienced its worst September start since 2008.[1]Overall, the S&P 500 lost 1.03%, the Dow dropped 0.19%, and the NASDAQ gave back 2.55% for the week.[2]  International stocks in the MSCI EAFE also declined, losing 2.89%.[3]
The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX), which can help gauge market fears, increased 15.8% last week.[4] This increase matches what often occurs during September, when volatility returns after waning during the summer months. In fact, since 2007, volatility has been above average in September.[5]
Of course, the change from one month or season to another isn't enough to trigger market losses and rising volatility. Let's analyze what drove these experiences last week.

1. Trade tension escalated between the U.S. and China. The U.S. is getting closer to resolving trade issues with Mexico, Canada, and the European Union - and the countries may unite against China's trade approach. As a result, the likelihood of calming the trade dispute between the U.S. and China is fading.[6] Last week, President Trump said he was prepared to add tariffs to another $267 billion in Chinese goods. These tariffs would be in addition to the $200 billion that may launch soon, which one expert said could reduce the S&P 500 by 5%.[7]

2. Tech stocks dropped. Last week, the technology sector declined by 2.9%.[8] Tech has performed better than any other sector this year and has been a market leader for 3 years. But concerns about increasing regulation - with a focus on social media companies - weighed on investors' minds last week.[9]

3. Wage growth increased.The latest jobs report surpassed expectations, with the economy adding 201,000 jobs in August. Year-over-year wage growth also rose more than expected and hit its fastest pace since 2009.[10] This wage increase contributed to stock losses, because it could mean that 2018 will have 2 additional interest rate increases - with more on the horizon for 2019.[11]
Last week certainly provided data and headlines for investors to digest. But the job market, economic fundamentals, and market remain strong.[12] For the moment, we'll continue to review the data we receive and seek new ways to help you prepare for what lies ahead.

Tuesday: JOLTS
Thursday: CPI, Jobless Claims
Friday: Retail Sales, Industrial Production, Consumer Sentiment


Notes: All index returns (except S&P 500) exclude reinvested dividends, and the 5-year and 10-year returns are annualized. The total returns for the S&P 500 assume reinvestment of dividends on the last day of the month. This may account for differences between the index returns published on Morningstar.com and the index returns published elsewhere. International performance is represented by the MSCI EAFE Index. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly.
[1] www.cnbc.com/2018/09/07/us-markets-jobs-report-and-data-in-focus.html

[2] http://performance.morningstar.com/Performance/index-c/performance-return.action?t=SPX®ion=usa&culture=en-US



[3] www.msci.com/end-of-day-data-search

[4] www.cnbc.com/2018/09/07/us-markets-jobs-report-and-data-in-focus.html

[5] www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-09-07/summer-s-end-breaks-s-p-500-s-momentum-as-tech-trade-war-bite?srnd=markets-vp

[6] www.marketwatch.com/story/near-term-likelihood-of-us-china-trade-pact-seen-dimming-2018-09-07

[7] www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-09-07/summer-s-end-breaks-s-p-500-s-momentum-as-tech-trade-war-bite?srnd=markets-vp

[8] www.marketwatch.com/story/stock-futures-point-to-lower-open-after-jobs-report-sp-500-could-have-4th-down-day-2018-09-07?dist=markets

[9] www.cnbc.com/2018/09/07/us-markets-jobs-report-and-data-in-focus.html

[10] wsj-us.econoday.com/byshoweventfull.asp?fid=485659&cust=wsj-us&year=2018&lid=0&prev=/byweek.asp#top

[11] www.marketwatch.com/story/stock-futures-point-to-lower-open-after-jobs-report-sp-500-could-have-4th-down-day-2018-09-07?dist=markets

[12] www.marketwatch.com/story/stock-futures-point-to-lower-open-after-jobs-report-sp-500-could-have-4th-down-day-2018-09-07?dist=markets

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