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PORTLAND, OR, October 19, 2019 /24-7PressRelease/ -- The third quarter of 2019, for investors, was the most challenging yet this year. Overall markets were relatively flat, but it took a bunch of volatility to get there. Earnings were good, yet again, but the dark clouds of trade wars, collapsing interest rates and whether or not the U.S. would follow the world's economic slowdown kept the markets on edge. On top of all of that, we continue to march ever-closer to the 2020 presidential election. If that doesn't add a layer of angst and uncertainty, we can't tell you what would!
Listed below are returns of five major indexes thru September 30th:
S&P 500 + 20.55%
Russell 2000 + 14.18%
BarCap US Agg Bond + 8.52%
MSCI EAFE (Europe) + 12.80%
MSCI EM (Emerging Markets) + 5.89%
As we are now in the 11th year of this record setting bull market, the grand majority of investors assume the next market crash has to be right around the corner. It just might be, but there's also a chance it's not. No one really knows for sure, and that's why investors should remain focused on the fundamentals; diversify, invest per your time horizon and remain the course. It's hard to believe, for many, but that actually worked really well through 2008, 2009 and the years following. So, use that as a great education and playbook for the period of uncertainty ahead.
Trade, political noise and the concern of a slowing economy have been the main challengers of the bull market in 2019. Corporate earnings and the consumer have been fighting back, however, and remained strong through September. That said; how well businesses are doing and whether or not the consumer remains optimistic throughout the holiday season will be very important to the health of the stock market. Keep in mind, the markets also have a friend today that they didn't have a year ago. The Federal Reserve has cut interest rates two times this year and will likely do so again at the end of October. Last year they were rapidly hiking rates and became one of the main reasons for the market decline in December. One old adage on Wall Street says "Don't fight the Fed". Their current round of easing is stimulative to the economy, which the markets have and will recognize.
Since it's October all of a sudden, we wish you and your family a very happy, healthy and safe holiday season. As we go into year-end, please let us know if there's anything we can do to help. We look forward to hearing from you.
Sloy, Dahl & Holst
Sloy, Dahl & Holst, Inc.
Shantel Sloy, Public Relations
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